Let Farmers Grow Hemp!

Let Farmers Grow Hemp!
Posted by FoM on May 18, 1999 at 05:23:25 PT
Source: The Capital Times
Name any crop grown by Wisconsin farmers and then check the prices those same farmers are getting for their efforts. Nobody's putting money in the bank.
And yet there is a cash crop that has the potential to be a money-maker. Until now, it's been one that American farmers were not legally allowed to grow -- industrial hemp.When the former director of the CIA, James Woolsey, is hired by the North American Industrial Hemp Council to lobby for repeal of the federal ban on industrial hemp, something is in the air, and not what you're thinking.Now Wisconsin agricultural groups have joined state lawmakers from both sides of the aisle who say this is the time to move forward on the issue. The sticking point is the fact that federal law defines hemp as a form of marijuana even though experts say the plant has less than 1 percent of the psychoactive chemical that gets folks high.Hemp was once grown commercially in the United States until federal drug laws were changed. Today the United States allows hemp and hemp products to be imported. In fact, we use 75 percent of the hemp produced worldwide. Its fibers can be used in everything from auto body parts to paper-making, and its root structure makes it a natural herbicide and insecticide.Paul Mahlberg, a professor of plant pathology at Indiana University, says law enforcement officials should have no problem distinguishing between legal and illegal marijuana because the two types of plants look completely different. Identification has not been a problem in Canada or Europe where hemp is grown legally, so that's an argument that has no weight.It's an ideal crop that the United States is forced to import because of outdated drug policies. This is the ideal time for Congress to lift the ban and let American farmers -- including those in Wisconsin -- grow hemp legally and profit from it.
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Comment #1 posted by Mark Brickman on June 27, 1999 at 11:29:24 PT:
Hemp farming
 Thank God this issue is getting the attention it needs to help end the war on drugs. Hemp needs to be reexplained to the public. Have everyone read "The Emperor Wears No Clothes" by Jack Herer.
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