Industrial Hemp to be re-legalized in the United States?

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23-03-2007 22:16:02

[quoted56914c008]WASHINGTON, DC — For the second time since the federal government outlawed hemp farming in the United States, a federal bill has been introduced that would remove restrictions on the cultivation of non-psychoactive industrial hemp. The chief sponsor of H.R. 1009, the "Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2007," is Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) and the nine original co-sponsors are Representatives Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Barney Frank (D-MA), Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), Jim McDermott (D-WA), George Miller (D-CA), Pete Stark (D-CA) and Lynn Woolsey (D-CA). The bill may be viewed online here.

"It is indefensible that the United States government prevents American farmers from growing this crop. The prohibition subsidizes farmers in countries from Canada to Romania by eliminating American competition and encourages jobs in industries such as food, auto parts and clothing that utilize industrial hemp to be located overseas instead of in the United States," said Dr. Paul. "By passing the Industrial Hemp Farming Act the House of Representatives can help American farmers and reduce the trade deficit — all without spending a single taxpayer dollar."

U.S. companies that manufacture or sell products made with hemp include Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps, a California company who manufactures the number-one-selling natural soap, and FlexForm Technologies, an Indiana company whose natural fiber materials are used in over 2 million cars. Hemp food manufacturers such as French Meadow Bakery, Hempzels, Living Harvest, Nature's Path and Nutiva now make their products from Canadian hemp. Although hemp grows wild across the U.S., a vestige of centuries of hemp farming, the hemp for these products must be imported. Health Canada statistics show that 48,060 acres of industrial hemp were produced in Canada in 2006. Farmers in Canada have reported that hemp is one of the most profitable crops that they can grow. Hemp clothing is made around the world by well-known brands such as Patagonia, Bono's Edun and Giorgio Armani.

There is strong support among key national organizations for a change in the federal government's position on hemp. The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA) "supports revisions to the federal rules and regulations authorizing commercial production of industrial hemp." The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) has also passed a pro-hemp resolution.

Numerous individual states have expressed interest in industrial hemp as well. Fifteen states have passed pro-hemp legislation; seven (Hawaii, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Montana, North Dakota and West Virginia) have removed barriers to its production or research. North Dakota has issued state licenses, the first in fifty years, to two farmers so far. Rep. Paul's bill would remove federal barriers and allow laws in these states regulating the growing and processing of industrial hemp to take effect.

"Under the current national drug control policy, industrial hemp can be imported, but it can't be grown by American farmers," says Eric Steenstra, President of Vote Hemp. "The DEA has taken the Controlled Substances Act's antiquated definition of marijuana out of context and used it as an excuse to ban industrial hemp farming. The Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2007 will bring us back to more rational times when the government regulated marijuana, but told farmers they could go ahead and continue raising hemp just as they always had," says Mr. Steenstra.

Vote Hemp is a non-profit organization dedicated to the acceptance of and a free market for industrial hemp and to changes in current law to allow U.S. farmers to once again grow low-THC industrial hemp. More information about hemp legislation and the crop's many uses may be found at or BETA SP or DVD Video News Releases featuring footage of hemp farming in other countries are available upon request by contacting Adam Eidinger at 202-744-2671.[/quoted56914c008]

Some interesting facts

- George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and a few of our forefathers were hemp farmers.

- Ben Franklin owned a mill that made hemp paper. Jefferson drafted the Declaration of Independence on hemp paper.

- Betsy Ross made the first flag of the United States of America out of the finest, strongest fiber available... Hemp.

- Henry Ford experimented with hemp to build car bodies. He wanted to build and fuel cars from farm products.

- Rudolph Diesel designed his engine to run on hemp oil.

- Construction products such as medium density fiber board, oriented strand board, and even beams, studs and posts could be made out of hemp. Because of hemp's long fibers, the products will be stronger and/or lighter than those made from wood.

- Hemp can displace cotton which is usually grown with massive amounts of chemicals harmful to people and the environment. 50% of all the world's pesticides are sprayed on cotton.

- Hemp fibers are longer, stronger, more absorbent and more mildew-resistant than cotton.

- Hemp can displace wood fiber and save forests for watershed, wildlife habitat, recreation and oxygen production, carbon sequestration (reduces global warming), and other values.

- Hemp can yield 3-8 dry tons of fiber per acre. This is four times what an average forest can yield.

- Hemp grows well in a variety of climates and soil types. It is naturally resistant to most pests, precluding the need for pesticides. It grows tightly spaced, out-competing any weeds, so herbicides are not necessary. It also leaves a weed-free field for a following crop.

- Hemp can be made into fine quality paper. The long fibers in hemp allow such paper to be recycled several times more than wood-based paper.

- During World War II, the United States government (Department of Agriculture) issued a video titled "Hemp for Victory" encouraging farmers to grow hemp.

- Just about anything can be made from hemp... Food, fiber, textiles, paper, construction supplies, fuel... and even plastics.

The "Hemp For Victory" video is available here

[bd56914c008]"Make the most you can of the Indian Hemp seed and sow it everywhere." - President George Washington, 1794[/bd56914c008]

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24-03-2007 00:05:51

So we will be able to smoke our clothes and cars?


24-03-2007 05:37:03

if you want to burn your throat and never get high, yeah I guess so lol

I think it's absurd that industrial hemp is illegal in the first place. Hell, it grows like wildfire in the can find it in ditches and in fields all over the place.

I never understood that law. Why make a plant illegal that's not a drug

It's like making cotton illegal. It's completely absurd. Why ban a FIBER? Our gov't acts retarded sometimes, I swear. They think hemp=marijuana.

That's like saying outlaw poppy seeds because the plant they come from is in related to the opium poppy.


24-03-2007 05:56:39

If theres no way to get high of it then i see no problems....


24-03-2007 16:46:29

[quote822f245152="nytrate"]I never understood that law. Why make a plant illegal that's not a drug[/quote822f245152]

All I know is George Washington and our forefathers would be infuriated if they knew the government they founded was doing this.


25-03-2007 17:22:37

And 60 percent of deforestation is for the production of paper, so if we make paper out of hemp we will be saving the trees )


26-03-2007 01:12:44

[quotec40038b624="mgcccstudent88"]And 60 percent of deforestation is for the production of paper, so if we make paper out of hemp we will be saving the trees )[/quotec40038b624]

Exactly. One acre of hemp can produce up to four times as much paper as one acre of trees and it only takes 3 months to regenerate a crop (where as if you use trees, it takes 20-25 years to regenerate a crop), and as I mentioned eariler you can recycle hemp paper several times more than you can with wood-based paper (wood-based paper can be recycled 3 times). Also, hemp requires no pesticides or any chemicals (100 tons of recycling wood-based paper can produce up to 40 tons of toxic waste where as hemp paper can be bleached with hydrogen peroxide, which is safe and doesn't produce any harmful by-products). All natural and can be grown in most climates.

Also, hemp paper contains no acids, meaning it won't yellow or become brittle over time.

musing mumbler

27-03-2007 11:52:24

I have some pieces of hemp clothing and people always ask me if I'm going to smoke them. It's gets kind of annoying sometimes.


27-03-2007 11:57:17

I had some sweet hemp shoes


27-03-2007 13:06:38

what is the us government retarded? I did not know of all these benefits


27-03-2007 13:21:52

[quote7e879d2373="fawker"]what is the us government retarded?[/quote7e879d2373]



27-03-2007 13:28:13

[quoteb68dc0751f]- Hemp can yield 3-8 dry tons of fiber per acre. This is four times what an average forest can yield. [/quoteb68dc0751f]

Not to mention that the same amount regrows in under a year. How long does it take forests to grow back?

The fact that we don't take advantage of hemp and it's benefits does make our government retarded, yes. We rather chop down trees damnit than grow a plant that is in the same species as the devil weed!

I once read that you could live off hemp seeds. Supposedly it's one of the most nutritious and balanced foods in nature.

Not to mention delicious! I love hemp nuts, even though they are freaking tiny


27-03-2007 13:51:05

[quoted12d71eab1="mgcccstudent88"]And 60 percent of deforestation is for the production of paper, so if we make paper out of hemp we will be saving the trees )[/quoted12d71eab1]

Although since most of those trees are grown for the specific purpose of being cut down, we won't really be saving them, since they wouldn't exist otherwise.

Anyway, what does 'introduced' mean? Approved or just proposed? If the latter, then it's no indication that it will get passed; almost all bills get struck down—proposing the bill itself is often just a political tool by politicians that know it will get struck down, but will please voters who think that politician was serious about the proposal.

In either case, I'm all for this bill.


27-03-2007 14:09:09

introduced means proposed

as in, introduced for debate/discussion


27-03-2007 14:12:33

In that case I'm 99% sure this won't get passed.

Our society is still too paranoid of anything resembling marijuana for this to get passed on a federal level.


28-03-2007 06:46:17

yea but the funny thing is, it grows like wildfire all over the midwest. They know it's worthless. Its one of the most common weeds in places like Nebraska...because hemp farming was so big in those areas years ago I guess it left a lot of wild hemp.

You can go down the highway and see just big patches of hemp.

This makes it quite ridiculous that it can't be grown commercially. It's legal to import hemp, process hemp into materials...just not to grow it. Insanity.

I guess the only argument from the other side is that it would be easy to hide patches of marijuana in fields of hemp but what they fail to realize is that if anyone grew marijuana in fields of hemp it would be dirt weed anyways because it would be so heavily pollinated from the hemp. Think almost solid seed.

Personally, I wouldn't be caught dead in a hemp necklace or anything. I have some clothes made of it but you'd never know. The hemp necklace is equivalent to wearing a sign around your neck that says "I'm a stupid teenage stoner!". liespeciallyli if it has a glass mushroom hanging from it. Prep school hippies crack me up


28-03-2007 06:49:03

Does hemp put off the same amount of heat as marijuana does?


28-03-2007 07:57:40

I'd assume it would be very similar in thermal imaging if that's what you're talking about.


28-03-2007 08:41:49

Yes. I know marijuana is easily found in the forests due to its heat output, using thermal imaging. I have no idea if hemp gives off that much heat though?


28-03-2007 08:46:18

it's not that it gives off a lot of heat that makes it detectable...its just that it gives a predictable range that can be used to help find it. Almost everything alive will give off heat.

I don't know for a fact but I'd suspect that the heat thermal reading from hemp is very similar to that of marijuana because they are so closely related. This doesn't mean it gives out an extraordinary amount of heat.


28-03-2007 08:47:14

I have a sweet hemp candle on my desk )