The New Zealand Hemp Industries Association Incorporated (NZHIAI) announced on July 26 that they would begin officially negotiating with the government to develop trial plots of industrial hemp. Their first meeting is scheduled for August 21, with the aim to have hemp seed in the ground by October.
“Industrial hemp trials can be conducted under existing legislation,” said Customs Minister Phillida Bunkle, “but it would still need government approval for the product to be grown here commercially. If the trials are successful, we envisage removing hemp from the Misuse of Drugs Act and regulating it under the Customs and Excise Act.”
She continued to say that she is “personally convinced that hemp is a wonderful natural product, and it presents us with an excellent opportunity for economic development in many regions currently experiencing difficulties.
New Zealand’s Green Party issued a statement saying that they hoped this would “spell the end of years of procrastination by Government politicians.”
Green Party Co-Leader Rod Donald said that “It is ironic that the last [National Party] Government talked a lot about enterprise and initiative and yet refused to allow Federated Farmers to trial this potentially lucrative crop. The new [Labour Party] Government has been moving at a snails pace, but at least it has been moving.”
New Zealand Hemp Industries Association Inc.
Ph/Fax 64 (0)4 9384879 Cell: 025 591479
email: [email protected] or [email protected]