Federally legal hemp, a fruitful endeavor in Colorado, gets jolt from Republican Mitch McConnell | AspenTimes.com

Federally legal hemp, a fruitful endeavor in Colorado, gets jolt from Republican Mitch McConnell

McConnell announces plans to introduce The Hemp Farming Act of 2018

Alicia Wallace
The Cannabist
A hemp strain high in cannabidiol at Ambary Gardens in Kittredge on March 9, 2016.
Denver Post file

Colorado’s burgeoning hemp industry got a jolt Monday when Republican Mitch McConnell, the Senate’s Majority Leader, gave his full-throated support of shoring up federal laws around hemp.

McConnell announced plans to introduce The Hemp Farming Act of 2018, which would remove hemp from regulation as a controlled substance and treat it as an agricultural commodity.

Right now, no state grows more hemp than Colorado, and federal legalization could prove bountiful for growers and those who can farm out their expertise elsewhere.

Currently, hemp businesses across the U.S. operate under a smattering of federal protections — via the Agricultural Act of 2014, better known as the Farm Bill, which expires this year, and via appropriations riders. Those protections are even stronger in Colorado, which established an industrial hemp program in 2013 as a result of voters legalizing adult-use cannabis.

“I think (federal hemp legalization) can be huge because Colorado is already set up in a better situation than any other state,” said Morris Beegle, founder and president of the Colorado Hemp Company.

Read the full story from The Cannabist.


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