Of all the freedom-crushing laws and regulations issued from Washington, one of the most ridiculous is the decades-long federal ban on industrial hemp. For far too long, farmers and manufacturers in Kentucky and across the United States have been blocked from growing hemp or producing products from this versatile and useful plant. My colleagues and I in both the House and Senate hope to end this illogical ban. In January of this year, I reintroduced H.R. 525, the “Industrial Hemp Farming Act,” which would stop the federal government’s hemp blockade.
First, however, it is important to remember that the fight for hemp freedom is entirely unrelated to the issue of marijuana legalization. The scare tactics and false rhetoric used by those who want to keep industrial hemp out of Kentucky are not based on facts. As the Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports, hemp and marijuana plants are distinct from one another. Although they both descend from the same species of plant, their chemical makeup is different, as is their physical appearance. Importantly, hemp has too low a THC (delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, marijuana’s primary psychoactive chemical) content to have any intoxicating effect.
Unfortunately, false information about hemp causes more than just confusion – it results in the export of valuable U.S. jobs to foreign countries. According to CRS, “Some estimate that the global market for hemp consists of more than 25,000 products in nine submarkets: agriculture; textiles; recycling; automotive; furniture; food/nutrition/beverages; paper; construction materials; and personal care.” And while the United States does not produce hemp, other industrialized nations do. Specifically, China is one of the largest producers and exporters of hemp products in the world, and we import hemp from China.
– Read the entire article at Cincinnati.com.