October 20, 2014

First legal hemp harvest in decades is underway in Colorado

High Plains Public Radio
Colorado farmers are making history this fall with the first legal commercial hemp harvest on U.S. soil in 57 years. But, the bulk of the harvest won’t be made into the plant’s diverse list of potential uses. Farmers will be squirreling away seed to plant next year reported Nelson Harvey for High Country News.

Shipping hemp seeds across state lines is federally banned.  That’s caused a seed shortage which has already stunted the growth of Colorado’s hemp industry. Last spring, farmers registered with the Colorado Department of Agriculture to plant nearly 1,600 acres of hemp. Yet seed shortages, poor germination rates and inexperience with the crop will limit their harvest this fall to about 200 acres, according to Zev Paiss of the Rocky Mountain Hemp Association.

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