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Hemp Hoe Down 7

For the first time in its seven-year history, The Hemp Hoe Down (HHD) will be a four day event from Thursday May 10th up through Sunday Night May 13th. The HHD will again take place at the Elk View Campground, which is located five miles South of Sturgis, SD, at exit 37 off of Interstate 90, on the North Eastern side of the interstate. The festivities will kick off Thursday with Slip Disc productions’ DJs spinning from 7pm to 4am. Slip Disc Productions was responsible for the popular Badlands Electronic Music Festival in 2002. Several original artists will be performing on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday including Solution, an amazing jam-jazz band from Sioux Falls on Friday, New Primitives, Minneapolis’s award winning reggae band on Saturday, and Mad Hats and Violent Hippie, Spearfish’s best, on Sunday. Music will be stationed under a big top circus tent this year to increase the sound value of the event. Several sustainable workshops will again be offered, including building with cob, offered by Natural Villages, and converting a diesel engine to run on waste vegetable oil. Workshops on Wind and Solar Energy by High Plains Wind Energy will also be offered. In addition we will be offering classes on making bio-diesel, making body salve, and making paper with a blender. Inside the Elk View Campground Pavilion will be offered organic hemp meals from the Organnabis Kitchen, Hemp Beer, and the widest selection of hemp/eco clothing, paper products, accessories and goods in the region. We are also proud to introduce Hemp Milk from Living Harvest. It is sure to be a big hit. Hemp Milk is a great way to take advantage of the superior nutritional value of the hemp seed, including all 10 essential amino acids, and all 4 essential fatty acids. Wind and solar energy green tags from Pine Ridge hemp farmer and former president of the Reservation, Alex White Plume, who will be making his annual appearance and speech on Friday May 11th, will supplement the energy used for this event. In addition, the PBS documentary, “Silent Standing Nation”, on the White Plumes will be shown Friday afternoon and Saturday afternoon. A workshop on how to put up a tipi will be offered Friday around 3 pm. The price is set at $10/night for Thursday, $15 for Friday, $15 for Saturday, and $10 for Sunday. Attendees may purchase a ticket for $35 that is good for all four nights at All prices include camping. Tickets can be purchased, and other more detailed information on the workshops, the Frisbee golf tournament, speakers, and links to the band’s music can be obtained at the website The tickets are printed on 100% hemp paper. People of all ages are welcome to attend. Kids under 13 are free. The event is indoor/outdoor and will take place rain or shine. Camping is free. Hemp Hoe Down 7 is sponsored by Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps and Global Market. Thursday’s DJ night will include performances from Johnny 000 (Deep, Slip Disc, Rapid City,) Nick Rave (drum’ n’ bass, Slip Disc, RC,) Kung Pow (urban house, Slip Disc, RC,) Mac (drum’ n’ bass, Okizoo, RC,) Tek Steze (tech house, Okizoo, RC,) DJ Solful (drum’ n’ bass, RC,) EASE 95 (new jive, Okizoo, RC,) Chucky (tech house, Mixed Up, RC,) and DJ Manatea (Jungle, DJ4Norml Project, Casper, WY.) Friday will feature music the Javier Trego Trio. Javier has been dubbed ‘little Santana” by his peers in Minneapolis. His guitar renditions are sure to amaze. Tommy ‘the silent’ will also perform. Tommy is a keyboardist for Tone Grown, and Violent Hippie. His solo act on guitar is very mellifluous. He seems to invent new ways to play the guitar. Up first on Friday May 11th is the band Lunar Funk Theory, a funk band from Sioux Falls. The band Solution will complete the night. They are going to play two high-energy jazz like jam sessions to close out the evening. Come and check them out if you like to get down and dance. Saturday will feature music from Juliet and Judah James, a duet from Minneapolis. Each musician will also perform a solo set sometime throughout the weekend. Juliet’s voice is spectacular. She will leave the crowd jubilant with tears in their eyes screaming for freedom. In the early evening Mace, an amazing blues singer from Ohio will perform with Rapid City rockers Tone Grown backing him up. Then Tone Grown will take the stage, with Mace playing base and singing some songs. Expect these sets to outdo anything you have seen Tone Grown perform up to this point. Closing out the night will be Minneapolis’s best reggae band, New Primitives. If you like reggae, then don’t miss this set. Also on Saturday May 11th will be Chris Olsen (keyboards, Boulder, CO,) Dog War (Reggae, RC,) and Governor’s Suite, a jam band from Sioux Falls. Sunday, Mother’s Day, will feature Spearfish bands Violent Hippie and Mad Hats. Violent Hippie is Chris Cady’s new punk rock creation. Mad Hats are a rock band that plays a wide blend of material. Both bands will play together in-between their sets. Also featured will be the Sequoia Trio, which is made up of Sequoia, Tone Grown’s Todd Rigione on bass, and Jon Margolis on drums. Also performing is Lange Termes, a folk singer from Bozeman, MT, who is son of legendary artist Dick Termes, and Free World Revolution, an acoustic band from Sioux Falls. Sunday’s festivities will be aimed at celebrating Mother Earth. Much more musical entertainment will be featured at the HHD. Other acts will be announced as they are confirmed. Check out to hear the bands and to see the updated set list. From 1 to 5 pm on Saturday there will be a Frisbee Golf Tournament. The tournament is free and open to all attendees. Participants must bring their own discs. The nets will be set up all four day for practice and for fun. Plenty of hemp gear, including t-shirts, hats, caps, bags, health bars, fuel bars, candles, lip balm, lotion, salve, socks, boxers, panties, rolling papers, soaps, belts, dog leashes, prayer flags, journals, wallets, and long sleeve t-shirts will be for sale at the Hempire vending station. Participants are encouraged to bring camping gear, water, and warm clothes for the evening, with a big smile eager to learn about nature’s most useful crop. All outside alcohol must be kept away from the main building. Illegal drugs are not allowed. All dogs must be leashed. No glass containers are allowed. Please be respectful. For more information, contact Jeremy Briggs of Keefe Green Productions at 605-484-1806 or [email protected].
Thu, 05/10/2007 - 7:00pm - Sun, 05/13/2007 - 12:00am
United States

Vote Hemp Press Release: Poll Shows Strong Voter Support for Industrial Hemp Farming in California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, March 19, 2007 CONTACT: Adam Eidinger Ph: 202-744-2671, [email protected] or Tom Murphy Ph: 207-542-4998, [email protected] Poll Shows Strong Voter Support for Industrial Hemp Farming in California 71% of Californians Support Changing State Law to Allow Hemp Farming; Hearings on New Hemp Bill AB 684 Scheduled for March 27 SACRAMENTO, CA – Vote Hemp, the nation’s leading grassroots organization working to give farmers the right to grow non-psychoactive industrial hemp to be made into everything from food, clothing, paper, body care, bio-fuel and even auto parts has released a new poll of 801 likely California voters about industrial hemp. The telephone poll has a 3.5% margin of error and sampled likely California voters from February 22 – 26. The survey was conducted by the respected research firm Zogby International on behalf of Vote Hemp and five manufacturers of hemp food products including Alpsnack™, French Meadow Bakery™, Living Harvest™, Nature’s Path Organic Foods™ and Nutiva™. The poll results released today for the first time confirm there is strong support for reform on the issue of industrial hemp. A total of 71% support changing state law to allow farmers to grow hemp and of those surveyed 46% strongly support and another 25% somewhat support changing state law so California farmers can supply manufacturers with hemp seed, oil and fiber. Presently companies must import hemp from other countries. Over the past several years the California Legislature has passed resolutions and bills to permit farmers to grow industrial hemp. AB 684, the California Industrial Hemp Farming Act is authored by Assemblyman Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) and Assemblyman Chuck DeVore (R-Irvine) and will be heard in the Assembly Public Safety Committee on Tuesday, March 27, 2007. If passed and signed into law, AB 684 would regulate commercial industrial hemp farming in California. Today more than 30 industrialized nations grow industrial hemp and export to the US. It is the only crop that is both illegal to grow and legal for Americans to import. Sales of hemp food and body care products have grown rapidly in recent years fueling an expansion of hemp farming in Canada which topped 48,000 acres in 2006. Poll questions and results regarding industrial hemp farming policy and consumer attitudes on hemp products and nutrition can be viewed online at There is evidence of strong support among men and women and self-identified liberal and conservative voters on the issue. Among California Republicans, 60% support changing state law on hemp while 74% of Democrats are in support. Support was also steady among all age groups, ranging from 54% of 18 to 29 year olds to 82% of 30 to 49 year olds, 74% of 50 to 64 years olds and 60% of those over 65 years old. Assemblyman Mark Leno who introduced AB 684 in February said, “The Zogby poll underscores that California voters of all political persuasions support changing the senseless policy of importing industrial hemp while prohibiting our own farmers from growing it.” # # # More information about hemp legislation and the crop’s many uses can be found at
Sacramento, CA
United States

The Candy Counter: Georgia Set to Ban Sales of Marijuana-Flavored Lollipops to Kids

Under a bill passed by the Georgia House of Representatives Tuesday, retailers there may soon be barred from selling lollipops, gumdrops, and any other candies flavored to taste like marijuana to children. The bill, HB 280, steamrolled through the House, passing by a margin of 133-26.

The bill is aimed at businesses that sell candies with drug-inspired names like "Pot Suckers" and "Kronic Kandy." Such products are flavored with hemp essential oil to create the taste of marijuana, but do not contain measurable amounts of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

If it passes the Senate, Georgia would become the first state to enact such a ban. The sale of marijuana-flavored candies has already been outlawed in the city of Chicago, Suffolk County, New York, and parts of Alameda County, California.

"This kind of product is being taken to concerts like the old ice cream pop that is being marketed on the street," said Republican state Rep. Judy Manning of Marietta, the bill's sponsor. "They're selling for $4 to $8 apiece. It's quite expensive and it's quite detrimental to our children."

Manning's bill says the candies promote drug use and promote the "false impression that marijuana is fun and safe." It bans the sale of "marijuana flavored products" to minors, with offenders subject to a $1,000 fine for each offense.

Atlanta is home to Coca-Cola. As Vote Hemp national outreach coordinator Tom Murphy told DRCNet in an e-mail message, "This makes you wonder if they would consider banning a coca-flavored soft drink. That's marketed to children and..."

Murphy also pointed out an error made by the New York Times in an article appearing Wednesday: The Times said the candies were made with hempseed oil -- an ingredient used in many now-mainstream food products that doesn't taste like marijuana -- as opposed to the candies' actual ingredient, hemp essential oil.

Vote Hemp is backing a state Senate bill, SB 258 that would create an exemption for hemp-based foods.

"Marijuana" Candy Banned In Georgia

Atlanta, GA
United States

Vote Hemp Press Release: Hemp Farming To Be Studied In New Mexico

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, March 6, 2007 CONTACT: Robert Jones,, 505-425-6825, [email protected] Hemp Farming To Be Studied In New Mexico SANTA FE, NM - The ditch weed whose name dare not be spoken can now be talked about openly in polite society. Lawmakers in Santa Fe have acknowledged and declared that hemp is not marijuana. The idea of industrial hemp farming and production has been given the stamp of approval and can now be considered mainstream in New Mexico. A memorial (HR49) has passed the New Mexico House of Representatives requesting and urging the New Mexico State Board of Regents to undertake a study on the viability of a legal industrial hemp industry in New Mexico. In addition, the memorial urges the U.S. Congress "to recognize industrial hemp as a valuable agricultural commodity, to define industrial hemp in federal law as a non-psychoactive and genetically identifiable species of the genus Cannabis and acknowledge that allowing and encouraging farmers to produce industrial hemp will improve the balance of trade by promoting domestic sources of industrial hemp and [that hemp] can make a positive contribution to the issues of global climate change and carbon sequestration." Lawmakers urged that an "in-depth economic analysis address the benefits of a legal hemp industry in New Mexico and the long-term impacts of establishing proper permitting and licensing procedures. The economic analysis shall attempt to determine the costs and benefits associated with encouraging economic development in various areas, including textiles, pulping products for paper, biocomposites and building materials, animal bedding, nutritional products for livestock, industries related to seed extraction and resins for potential biofuels, lubricants, paints and inks, cosmetics, body care products and nutritional supplements." "The legislature has spoken," says Albuquerque attorney John McCall, "saying that New Mexico lawmakers are on-board in support of industrial hemp farming, and encouraging our scientists and educators to look at the subject without fear of retribution by law enforcement or negative conventional wisdom. All of the benefits of hemp can now be explored in a legal forum." "This will give people all over the country the ability to approach the federal Drug Enforcement Authority to demand that industrial hemp be removed from their schedule of narcotic drugs and be allowed to once again become one of our major cash crops in the United States," according to McCall. According to the bill that passed yesterday by a vote of 59-2, industrial hemp refers to varieties of Cannabis that have less than three-tenths of one percent THC, and that it is not to be confused with marijuana. Industrial hemp is currently produced in more than thirty nations, including Canada, Great Britain, France, Germany, Romania, Australia and China. The United States is, by far, the largest consumer of industrial hemp products. Our manufacturers import millions of dollars worth of hemp seed and fiber every year and annual sales of hemp foods in the United States is growing rapidly. The New Mexico legislature has recognized that industrial hemp is a high-value, low-input crop that is not genetically modified, requires no pesticides, can be dryland farmed and uses less fertilizer than wheat or corn - both of which are grown here. Eric Steenstra, the President of Vote Hemp, the leading national industrial hemp advocacy group, expressed his congratulations. "I want to thank Rep. Begaye and the states' industrial hemp supporters for making New Mexico the 15th state to take a position in favor of returning to commercial industrial hemp farming. I hope New Mexico's Congressional delegation acts on the overwhelming support the state has shown for hemp." More information about industrial hemp in New Mexico can be found on the Web site.
Santa Fe, NM
United States

Drug Policy Forum of Kansas Update

February 16, 2007 -Drug Policy Forum: Lenexa KS, Sunday, Feb. 18th, 3 p.m. -KS Legislature: HB 2359 Sale of Drug Paraphernalia -Medical Marijuana: Research News & DEA Ruling -Lou Dobbs: Drug War is Failure -North Dakota: Hemp Licenses Issued -Next Volunteer Meeting February 24, 1 p.m. The Drug Policy Forum of Kansas is a 501(c)(3) organization. Donations are tax-deductible. Thank you to everyone who donated to DPFKS in 2006! Your contribution does make a difference! Drug Policy Forum This Weekend Tri-County Libertarians present: The War on Drugs: No-brainer or Insanity? Sunday, February 18, 3 p.m., with Laura Green, Executive Director of the Drug Policy Forum of Kansas and Brian Leininger, of Law Enforcement against Prohibition. Lenexa Community Center (AB room) 13420 Oak Street; Lenexa, KS 66215 Law Proposes Making Sales of Paraphernalia Illegal in KS HB 2359, a bill that would clarify certain definitions of drug paraphernalia and would increase penalties for possessing certain drug paraphernalia if the offense occurs within 1,000 feet of a school. Read our policy paper on this bill and why the legislature is short-changing Kansas kids. (Hint to Lawmakers in Topeka: Drug control strategies that include effective drug education are what deter kids from using drugs, not more laws!) Journal Neurology Reports Marijuana Useful for Intense Pain This month the medical journal Neurology reports on research conducted by Dr. Donald Abrams, of the University of California at San Francisco using smoked marijuana in HIV patients. The research found that; "Smoked cannabis was well tolerated and effectively relieved chronic neuropathic pain from HIV-associated sensory neuropathy." Patients suffering from peripheral neuropathy can feel as if their hands and feet are on fire, or as if they're being stabbed with a knife. Neuropathic pain — that is, pain caused by damage to the nerves — is also common in several other illnesses, including multiple sclerosis Since the advent of AIDS, medical practitioners have been able to do very little to ease the suffering caused by neuropathy. Indeed, there are no FDA-approved treatments for peripheral neuropathy in HIV patients. Even powerful, dangerous, and highly addictive narcotic painkillers are often ineffective in mitigating this pain. Read the abstract of the journal article here. This is one more article in a long list of medical research validating what patients have been telling doctors--smoked marijuana is effective medicine in some cases. Why then does the government continue to deny and arrest people who use marijuana with the recommendation of their physician? "I can state confidently, as a physician with extensive practice and specialized expertise in pain management that marijuana can prove, and has proven, medically useful to at least some chronic pain patients." --Dr. Richard Gracer, Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians and a Diplomate of the American Academy of Pain Management. DEA Administrative Judge Overturns Government Pot Farm Monopoly Professor Lyle Craker of the University of Mass., Amherst, working with the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) started petitioning the DEA six years ago to allow him to grow marijuana at the University. He wanted to use the plant to supply researchers around the country who had legitimate research purposes, but were unable to obtain it from the government's supply. The DEA, citing the University of Mississippi's 36-year monopoly on growing "official" marijuana, refused Prof. Craker's request. So he sued them. Opining that the government's supply of marijuana was 'inadequate' for researchers who have a valid need to use the substance in research, the judge ruled in favor of Professor Craker's application. "For too long the DEA has inappropriately inserted politics into a regulatory process that should be left to the FDA and medical science," said Allen Hopper, an attorney with the ACLU Drug Law Reform project who help litigate the case in a press release. Now it's up to DEA top Administrator Karen Tandy who has 20 days to either agree or disagree with the judge's ruling. Learn more in the Judge's decision here. The University of Mississippi grows marijuana for research and also to supply the 5 remaining legal federal medical marijuana patients who receive 300 "joints" per month from the government under the Investigational New Drug program. The program was abruptly halted by former President Bush when thousands of applications from persons who were HIV-positive, or had AIDS, applied to receive the drug in the early 1990s. CNN's Conservative Host Calls War on Drugs "Forgotten" Lou Dobbs this week called the Drug Czar to task for suggesting that the war on drugs was being won, writing in a commentary piece on the network's web site, "Obviously, John Walters and I are not looking at the same statistics." Dobbs called the more than 22 million people who abuse drugs in the US and the lack of available treatment "incredible." He goes on to say "We're fighting a war that is inflicting even greater casualties than the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and, incredibly, costing even more money." Dobbs calls for more treatment as the "only option" to "victory" in this war. Read the entire report on the CNN web site here. North Dakota Issues Licenses for Hemp Farmers According to a press release by the North Dakota Agriculture department the first license to grow industrial hemp, under a law passed by the legislature last year, was issued to state Rep. David Monson (R-Osnabrock). The assistant majority leader, who is also a farmer and strong proponent of industrial hemp, and other North Dakota would-be hemp farmers will now seek registration from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). But given the agency's hostile attitude toward hemp approval seems unlikely. Recently, the DEA refused to waive the non-refundable annual $2,293 registration fee, despite Johnson's request that it do so. Just this week, the North Dakota House passed two resolutions on the issue, urging Congress and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration to allow farmers to grow the crop. At the federal level, Congress has tentatively waded into the debate, with pro-hemp legislation introduced by Texas Republican Rep. Ron Paul. Although North Dakota has moved to make hemp farming legal, it remains illegal under federal law. While hemp products may be sold and consumed in the United States, federal law prohibits growing it here, so American farmers are forced to stand by and watch as imported hemp products cross the border from Canada and come overseas from Europe, where it is legally grown. Hemp can grow in all of the fifty US states. Kansas has not taken up the issue. Next Volunteer Meeting Saturday, February 24, 1 p.m. at the DPFKS offices 941 Kentucky Street, Lawrence, KS 785-841-8278 for more information. Won't you help us promote innovative drug policies by sending your tax-deductible donation today? Add yourself to our mailing list by going to our web site To unsubscribe, reply to this message with the word unsubscribe Our mailing address is DPFKS, 941 Kentucky, Lawrence, Kansas 66044
United States

Vote Hemp Press Release: Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2007 Introduced in Congress

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 13, 2007 CONTACT: Tom Murphy 207-542-4998 [email protected] Breaking News! Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2007 Introduced in Congress H.R. 1009 Would Give States Right to Regulate Farming of Versatile Hemp Crop 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), Raul 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 at: "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.
United States

Hemp: Ron Paul Introduces Industrial Hemp Bill in US Congress

Texas Republican Congressman Ron Paul has filed a bill that would legalize hemp farming in the United States. This marks the second time Rep. Paul has filed this bill, but it went nowhere in the last Congress. The bill, HR 1009, would allow domestic hemp manufacturers to buy their hemp from American producers. Currently, US law bars the production of industrial hemp, and American manufacturers have to import their hemp from other countries.
Ron Paul
This time around, Rep. Paul has nine cosponsors, all Democrats. They are Representatives Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Barney Frank (D-MA), Raul 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).

"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 Rep. 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."

Hemp food manufacturers such as French Meadow Bakery, Hempzels, Living Harvest, Nature's Path and Nutiva now make their products from Canadian hemp. "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," said Steenstra.
hemp plants
The introduction of the hemp bill comes just days after North Dakota issued the first state licenses for farmers to grow hemp. But North Dakota hemp farmers must still win approval from the DEA, something that is unlikely to occur under the current law. North Dakota isn't alone. Some 14 other states have passed pro-hemp measures and seven have passed bills that remove barriers to its production or research.

Industrial Hemp Farming Act Introduced in Congress

Washington, DC
United States
Vote hemp

Press Release: Vote Hemp Exposes ONDCP and DEA Lies about Hemp Farming

(press release from Vote Hemp)

Canadian Govt. Can Tell Difference Between Hemp and Marijuana, Why Can't the US?

WASHINGTON, DC -- On January 28, 2007 in the Minneapolis Star Tribune story "Industrial hemp producer? Plan raises feds' suspicions," Tom Riley of the White House Office on National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) was quoted as saying:

"You have legitimate farmers who want to experiment with a new crop," Riley said. "But you have another group, very enthusiastic, who want to allow cultivation of hemp because they believe it will lead to a de facto legalization of marijuana." Mr. Riley continued with "The last thing law enforcement people need is for the cultivation of marijuana-looking plants to spread. Are we going to ask them to go through row by row, field by field, to distinguish between legal hemp and marijuana?"

"The ONDCP is wrong in its characterization of industrial hemp advocates, and there is no evidence that farmers who grow industrial hemp are hiding marijuana plants in their fields, whether in Canada or anywhere else," says Vote Hemp President Eric Steenstra. "Because cross pollination of low THC industrial hemp and high THC marijuana is inevitable illicit marijuana growers avoid industrial hemp fields to protect the potency of their drug crop. It's simply illogical that a farmer's industrial hemp fields are ideal places to hide marijuana plants with all the extra scrutiny that comes with growing the crop. It's sad that, instead of a real policy debate on the issue of farming industrial hemp in the United States based on legislative intent and agronomic facts, the ONDCP and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) resort to false hyperbole and character assassination," says Steenstra. "Tom Riley is welcome to join me in Canada this summer for the Hemp Industries Association annual meeting and see for himself how our neighbors in the north can easily tell the difference between industrial hemp and marijuana crops."

Hemp farming in Canada is well regulated ensuring that only legitimate farmers are licensed and that they only grow government approved low-THC hemp. Requirements include applicant background checks, GPS coordinates of hemp fields, the use of approved low-THC seeds purchased from authorized seed vendors, and random inspections and testing. This licensing scheme ensures that farmers are only growing non-drug industrial hemp and not marijuana. Even though law enforcement is able to distinguish the difference between hemp and marijuana, the licensing process eliminates the need for them to visually distinguish between industrial hemp and its drug psychoactive cousin.

The lies about industrial hemp are prevalent in the public policy of the DEA as well. Steve Robertson, a DEA special agent in Washington, has also weighed in on the North Dakota debate with similar statements:

"The DEA does not have the authority to change existing federal law," Robertson said. "It's very simple for us: The law is there and we enforce the law," he said Wednesday. "We are law enforcement, not lawmakers."
-- "State's first hemp farming rules aimed at clearing federal hurdle," Grand Forks Herald, May 3, 2006

"It's interesting that Special Agent Robertson pretends that the DEA is purely a law enforcement entity, as they are not," says Tom Murphy, National Outreach Coordinator for Vote Hemp. "Like many Federal agencies, the DEA has been granted broad authority by Congress to interpret the statutes in the United States Code, such as the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). This includes re-scheduling substances and promulgating detailed rules and regulations. The DEA could easily negotiate industrial hemp farming rules with North Dakota under the Administrative Procedures Act, 5 USC 563. It is obvious that the current rules are not set up for farmers to grow an agricultural crop that has no potential for use as a drug" says Mr. Murphy. "Instead the DEA chooses to interfere in the legislative process by confusing legislators, reporters and the public with needless and misleading rhetoric."

Industrial hemp plants have long and strong stalks, have few branches, have been bred for maximum production of fiber and/or seed, and grow up to 16 feet in height. They are planted in high densities of 100 to 300 plants per square yard. On the other hand, drug varieties of Cannabis are shorter, are not allowed to go to seed, and have been bred to maximize branching and thus leaves and flowers. They are planted much less densely to promote bushiness. The drug and non-drug varieties are harvested at different times, and planting densities look very different from the air.

The last commercial hemp crops in the United States were grown in central Wisconsin in 1957, and these crops were purchased and processed by the Rens Hemp Company in Brandon, about 40 miles northwest of Milwaukee. The primary reason industrial hemp has not been grown in the US since then is because of its misclassification as a Schedule I drug in the CSA of 1970. The Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 had provisions for farmers to grow non-psychoactive hemp by paying an annual occupational tax of $1.00. The exemption for hemp products was contained in the definition of marihuana in the Act:

"The term 'marihuana' means all parts of the plant Cannabis sativa L. ... but shall not include the mature stalks of such plant, fiber produced from such stalks, oil or cake made from the seeds of such plant, any other compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such mature stalks (except the resin extracted therefrom), fiber, oil, or cake, or the sterilized seed of such plant which is incapable of germination."

The language of the exemption was carried over almost verbatim to the definition of marihuana in the CSA [21 USC. §802(16)] which superseded the 1937 Tax Act, but since there was no active hemp industry at the time the provisions for hemp farming were not included in the new Act.

There is also an exemption for hemp farming in the United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961 as amended by the 1972 Protocol Amending the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961. Article 28 states that:

"2. This Convention shall not apply to the cultivation of the cannabis plant exclusively for industrial purposes (fibre and seed) or horticultural purposes."

Laws allowing the farming of industrial hemp would not be in conflict with the Single Convention which the US is a signatory.

Seven states (Hawaii, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Montana, North Dakota and West Virginia) have now changed their laws to give farmers an affirmative right to grow industrial hemp commercially or for research purposes. All require a license from the DEA to grow the crop. Only Hawaii has grown hemp in recent years, but its research program ended when the DEA refused to renew the license. California's AB1147 addressed the DEA's bad faith interference by providing that the federal government has no basis or right to interfere with hemp grown in California pursuant to AB1147.

Drug War Issues

Criminal JusticeAsset Forfeiture, Collateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Court Rulings, Drug Courts, Due Process, Felony Disenfranchisement, Incarceration, Policing (2011 Drug War Killings, 2012 Drug War Killings, 2013 Drug War Killings, 2014 Drug War Killings, 2015 Drug War Killings, 2016 Drug War Killings, 2017 Drug War Killings, Arrests, Eradication, Informants, Interdiction, Lowest Priority Policies, Police Corruption, Police Raids, Profiling, Search and Seizure, SWAT/Paramilitarization, Task Forces, Undercover Work), Probation or Parole, Prosecution, Reentry/Rehabilitation, Sentencing (Alternatives to Incarceration, Clemency and Pardon, Crack/Powder Cocaine Disparity, Death Penalty, Decriminalization, Defelonization, Drug Free Zones, Mandatory Minimums, Rockefeller Drug Laws, Sentencing Guidelines)CultureArt, Celebrities, Counter-Culture, Music, Poetry/Literature, Television, TheaterDrug UseParaphernalia, Vaping, ViolenceIntersecting IssuesCollateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Violence, Border, Budgets/Taxes/Economics, Business, Civil Rights, Driving, Economics, Education (College Aid), Employment, Environment, Families, Free Speech, Gun Policy, Human Rights, Immigration, Militarization, Money Laundering, Pregnancy, Privacy (Search and Seizure, Drug Testing), Race, Religion, Science, Sports, Women's IssuesMarijuana PolicyGateway Theory, Hemp, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Marijuana Industry, Medical MarijuanaMedicineMedical Marijuana, Science of Drugs, Under-treatment of PainPublic HealthAddiction, Addiction Treatment (Science of Drugs), Drug Education, Drug Prevention, Drug-Related AIDS/HIV or Hepatitis C, Harm Reduction (Methadone & Other Opiate Maintenance, Needle Exchange, Overdose Prevention, Pill Testing, Safer Injection Sites)Source and Transit CountriesAndean Drug War, Coca, Hashish, Mexican Drug War, Opium ProductionSpecific DrugsAlcohol, Ayahuasca, Cocaine (Crack Cocaine), Ecstasy, Heroin, Ibogaine, ketamine, Khat, Kratom, Marijuana (Gateway Theory, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Medical Marijuana, Hashish), Methamphetamine, New Synthetic Drugs (Synthetic Cannabinoids, Synthetic Stimulants), Nicotine, Prescription Opiates (Fentanyl, Oxycontin), Psilocybin / Magic Mushrooms, Psychedelics (LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, Salvia Divinorum)YouthGrade School, Post-Secondary School, Raves, Secondary School