Last week Congress voted to pass a farm bill that addresses the legalization of cultivating hemp in the U.S. as well as other issues such as nutrition, conservation, trade, energy, and forestry. The bill received support from both major parties, and is expected to be signed into law by President Trump.
The new bill takes hemp off of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s list schedule 1 drugs, which also includes heroin, LSD, and marijuana. While marijuana and hemp both come from the same species of cannabis, hemp has extremely low levels of THC. Hemp is used to produce things such as clean car fuel, building materials, clothes, food, and beer.
Senator Mitch McConnell introduced the bill, and was one of the major leaders in getting it passed. In his home state of Kentucky, anti-smoking campaigns and high taxes have severely impacted the tobacco industry. Kentucky is now one of the nation’s largest hemp producers, and as such McConnell is hoping that hemp will become a lucrative crop for farmers.
Congress just voted to legalize hemp, Vox December 12, 2018
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