The Oklahoma hemp industry, which has steadily grown alongside the Oklahoma medical marijuana industry should be becoming more legitimate soon. With this growth, the Oklahoma regulatory bodies have decided to debate a variety of new regulatory changes to the hemp industry which has boomed within the Boomer state. With the cannabis industry, both medical marijuana and hemp, being relatively new to the state of Oklahoma, it should be no big surprise that the industry is seeing new regulatory measures being openly debated.
With the hemp industry emerging quickly in Oklahoma, we will briefly take a moment to do an overview of the hemp plant, what it is, and what products we may find useful from the plant. First, though, we will take a closer look at the regulatory changes which are being proposed by the state regulators to better and more efficiently allow the hemp sector to operate in Oklahoma. With that in mind, let us dive right in.
Regulatory Changes Proposed for Oklahoma Hemp
The Oklahoma House and Senate are considering a couple of hemp regulatory changes which have been proposed recently. Both the Oklahoma state House of Representatives and State Senate have introduced separate bills aimed at expanding the Oklahoma hemp cultivation industry. Furthermore, both portions of the state congress have approved bills and passed them through their committee, a key first step for a bill to become a law.
News reports have stated, “If either [bills] were made law, each would authorize the state agency to update rules related to the crop to allow its cultivation on a wider scale, now that Congress has legalized the growing and harvesting of hemp as part of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018.” This should be a positive sign for any hemp farmers across the state of Oklahoma. More broadly speaking, these should be seen as positive signs for the nascent Hemp industry within Oklahoma which just recently started alongside the Oklahoma medical marijuana sector. Both of which are doing quite well for the Boomer citizens of Oklahoma. With these changes, the state’s Department of Agricultural suggests that this year there may be as many as three times as many acres of industrial hemp grown compared to 2018 numbers. All and all, showing how medical marijuana and the patients are not the only benefiting from the new cannabis laws implemented across Oklahoma in 2018.
The Potentials of Oklahoma Hemp
The state of Oklahoma is truly perfect for the cultivation of hemp. With vast and beautiful arrays of landscapes for the crop to be grown on, hemp actually has the benefit of being a weed in this case. The hemp plant can often be grown in rougher landscapes than many other crops and with this many of the new hemp cultivation sites will hopefully not even bother the existing agricultural use of Oklahoma.
What is hemp though? Technically, it is the same as cannabis but with THC levels less than .3% or nearly non-existent. These low levels of THC allow the hemp plant to be used without fear of its psychoactive nature as is the case with traditional cannabis.
Furthermore, there is a multitude of applications for the hemp plant which include foods, textiles, and even fuels. The hemp plant is also famous for its applications as paper which can help save thousands of trees from being cut down simply by replacing them with responsible hemp farming. Furthermore, with the plant being so versatile it should become a staple crop for many parts of the midwest where agriculture runs the economy. With all these great applications, it should be no problem for the future hemp farmers of Oklahoma to find a suitable need for their crop. The wonderful and many different applications of the hemp plant help to create so much of the value that the plant has to offer the industrialized world.
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