Hemp: Two weeks after registration begins, twelve producers approved to grow

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Ben Droz
It's been two weeks since Colorado farmers could begin registering with the state Department of Agriculture to grow industrial hemp, and the department reports that twelve producers have completed the process.

As of March 17, seven producers had registered to grow hemp for commercial purposes and five producers had registered to grow it for the purposes of research and development. And there are even more would-be hemp farmers reportedly in the pipeline, waiting for their applications to be approved.

Producers have until May 1 to register if they'd like to grow hemp during the 2014 growing season. The registration application can be found on the Colorado Department of Agriculture website. The annual fee for growing the previously outlawed crop for commercial purposes is $200 plus $1 per acre, while the fee for growing hemp for research and development purposes is $100 plus $5 an acre. Research and development plots are limited to ten acres or less.

Colorado took its first steps toward legalizing industrial hemp when voters passed the marijuana-centric Amendment 64 in 2012. In addition to legalizing marijuana use for adults over the age of 21, the measure directed the state legislature to "enact legislation governing the cultivation, processing and sale of industrial hemp" by July 1, 2014. In May 2013, lawmakers approved a bill that created a nine-member advisory committee tasked with helping the Colorado Department of Agriculture come up with a way to register hemp farmers and inspect their crops by March 1, 2014. In late 2013, the department issued its final regulations for growing hemp in Colorado. Registration began March 1.

But the department wants farmers to understand that while growing hemp is legal in Colorado, it's still illegal at the federal level. That's why it has issued a cautionary press release. Among its warnings: Colorado's hemp seed stock is untested and may contain variable THC levels; hemp fields will be randomly tested and any plants containing more than 0.3 percent THC will be in violation of the law.

More from our Follow That Story archive: "Hemp: Read final regulations for growing industrial hemp in Colorado."


Follow me on Twitter @MelanieAsmar or e-mail me at melanie.asmar@westword.com


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15 comments
RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

The greatest impediment to establishing a domestic hemp economy is the development of infrastructure required to make products from the crop and the fact that labor costs in the US are so high.  We might all want to wear some hempen jeans made here, but if they are ever sold, they will be very expensive -- most of the textile industry left the United States long ago.  There are better prospects for foods made from hemp; I hear that Manitoba Hemp Harvest hopes to move here.  The sooner hemp hearts can be had for << $1/ounce, the better!

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

Congrats for limited success in combatting government stupidity. Here's to further success in that area!

Vote Hemp
Vote Hemp

Please remember, we at Vote Hemp can not recommend growing hemp, except for research persuant to Section 7606 of the Farm Bill, until the state versus federal problem is finally resolved. If you choose to do so it's at your own risk. You may learn more here http://votehemp.com/seed

BrianKelly
BrianKelly

The "War on Marijuana" has been a complete and utter failure. It is the largest component of the broader yet equally unsuccessful "War on Drugs" that has cost our country over a trillion dollars.


Instead of The United States wasting Billions upon Billions more of our tax dollars fighting a never ending "War on Marijuana", lets generate Billions of dollars, and improve the deficit instead. It's a no brainer.


The Prohibition of Marijuana has also ruined the lives of many of our loved ones. In numbers greater than any other nation, our loved ones are being sent to jail and are being given permanent criminal records which ruin their chances of employment for the rest of their lives, and for what reason?


Marijuana is much safer, and healthier to consume than alcohol. Yet do we lock people up for choosing to drink?


Let's end this hypocrisy now!


The government should never attempt to legislate morality by creating victim-less "crimes" because it simply does not work and costs the taxpayers a fortune.


Marijuana Legalization Nationwide is an inevitable reality that's approaching much sooner than prohibitionists think and there is nothing they can do to stop it!


Legalize Nationwide! Support Each and Every Marijuana Legalization Initiative!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase  ... the U$A will NEVER be able to compete with Chinese or Eastern Europe hemp or hemp products.


Even Washington and Jefferson FAILED financially with their hemp crops ... Jefferson was forced into BANKRUPTCY in his final years ... and they both had FREE SLAVE LABOR !!


Hemp Riches = another Stoner Delusion / LIE!

veronica210
veronica210

plz note that votehemp is not supportive of co hemp farming efforts...their ongoing posted comment r propaganda. scare tatics are disgusting. ...plz block this group from post comments like this...

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@BrianKelly  I do agree, in principle, but I'm very disappointed in measures like A64, which invite the government to heavily tax and regulate.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  Hemp hearts are an extremely nutritious and healthy, but highly perishable food.  If you walk into any Whole Foods (among other stores carrying hemp-based foods), you will find waffles and milk made with hemp, as well as fresh hemp hearts from Manitoba.  The nation's health is imperiled by dietary habits pushed on us by the corporate capitalists; hemp is a superior food that can improve America's diet, so it should be an important crop.  Processing the plant for seed is not so labor intensive that we would import all needed to satisfy domestic demand, as we do now due to Prohibition.  The prospect for using hemp oil as a base for biodiesel might also one day represent a significant market for American farmers, one far more benign than the artificial one in ethanol derived from maize.  The widespread use of hemp for food or fuel in this country may well sustain a substantial domestic agronomy in hemp -- some time after we make it legal to grow hemp as a crop under Federal law again; the Farm Bill did not do so.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident @BrianKelly  


The brain-dead A64 idiots DESERVE the Fist of Regulation repeatedly jack-hammered up their collective rectums ... they BEGGED and BARGAINED for it !!



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase  ... there is nothing extreme about the nutritional value of hemp seed hearts.


They are not highly perishable, as they last for over a year, unrefrigerated, even after opening the pouch.


Once again, you've been exposed for the BULLSHITTING LIAR that you are.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@kevin_hunt ... Spring has Sprung, Kevin ... time for you to get your bastardized cross-bred hemp seed from last year ready to sow this year's $200 acre financial windfall.


And remember -- Share the Wealth!!


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