The legislation could pave the way for legalized hemp production
It’s been in the works for several months and it finally looks as though the Farm Bill will be enacted into law. After going through some last-minute changes in the Senate, Congress has now completely signed off on the bill and is preparing to send it to President Trump’s desk for his signature. With ink to paper, industrial hemp could be legalized across the country.
The Agricultural Committees of both the House and Senate have been able to reach an agreement they’re both happy with, allowing the bill to be approved. The bill passed by a vote of 87-13 in the Senate and the House is expected to sign off on it soon. Word on Capitol Hill is that there doesn’t appear to be any objection by the House on the Farm Bill’s final language. The incoming House Agriculture Committee Chair, Representative Collin Peterson, has already said that he might even grow hemp on his Minnesota farm, lending credence to the House’s support of the bill.
Barring any unforeseen obstacles, passage of the bill would move hemp out from under the auspices of the Justice Department. The industry would be regulated by the Department of Agriculture, but that regulation is expected to only be cursory. U.S. farmers will, upon the bill’s approval, be able to cultivate, process and sell hemp, part of a multi-billion dollar industry.