Sunday, May 28, 2017

Hemp investors show interest in Guyana


A NUMBER of investors, entrepreneurs and financiers from the U.S., UK, Canada and Australia (including overseas-based Guyanese) have made positive enquiries, concerning investment potential in Guyana as an industrial hemp industry.
“Undoubtedly, the Guyana Government’s stability has created a good climate for investment,” says Hemp News, “but needs to speed up the repealing of the legislation and restrictions for the cultivation of industrial hemp and the manufacturing of over 25,000 types of hemp products.”
Speaking with Hemp News, a U.S.-based Guyanese who visited the country recently, pointed out that the hemp industry is making a great comeback worldwide and is very important to the economic future of Guyana, and could become the country’s economic legacy to eradicate poverty.
He explained that a number of these investors are becoming engaged in export-oriented enterprises and will employ and train thousands of Guyanese in the future.
Meanwhile, the latest enquiries came from a U.S.-based company, Hemp Inc, founded in 2008. The company has the largest decortication plant to process industrial hemp, located in Spring Hill, North Carolina.
Hemp Inc’s mission is to provide green solutions to make the world a better place to live, and supplies products that are eco-friendly, organic, healthy, and a solution that replaces many petroleum-based products.

Hemp fan reaps what he sows

By Kate O'Neill

Stall assistant Bubaloo Fahy at the Hemp Foods Australia stall at Mullumbimby Farmers' Market. PHOTO: KATE O'NEILL
Stall assistant Bubaloo Fahy at the Hemp Foods Australia stall at Mullumbimby Farmers' Market. PHOTO: KATE O'NEILL

LAST month's decision to legalise hemp as a food in Australia was the news Paul Benhaim had waited 17 years for.
Well known for kicking off the UK hemp food industry when he created the first ever hemp seed snack bar, Paul moved to Australia in 1999 and started Bangalow-based Hemp Foods Australia.
Up until last month's decision, however, he could only sell his products in Australia for skin care purposes, and with a "Not for human consumption” label attached.
Now, with the door open for Aussies to legally enjoy the nutritional benefits of hemp seeds - widely regarded as one of the healthiest seeds in the world - Paul is keen to start sharing more ides and recipes on how to incorporate them into your diet.
"We're really happy that we can be a bit more open about talking about it now,” Paul says.
Hemp seeds come from a type of cannabis plant that is extremely low in THC, the psychoactive component in marijuana. They don't get you high. They are, however, packed with the beneficial fatty acids, Omega 3 and 6. They are also an easy-to-digest complete protein and are a source of vitamins and minerals.
The four main hemp food products
At the Hemp Foods Australia stall at the Mullumbimby Farmers' Market, there are four main hemp food products - hemp seeds, hemp protein powder, hemp oil and hemp flour, all of which are based on hemp seeds.
Unlike many so-called "superfoods”, hemp seeds actually taste good, with a creamy nutty flavour, and because they are a gluten-free, raw, organic, vegan product, they have a lot of versatility.
The seeds themselves can be sprinkled on virtually anything for a nutrient boost - salad, cereal, smoothies, casseroles, avocado on toast, and can also be made into a creamy hemp "milk” by blending with water.
The protein powder can be used in a similar way.
"A lot of people think the protein powder is just for smoothies, but it can also go into things like sauces,” Paul says. "Mix one tablespoon into your savoury sauce and you'll get a different texture and some added flavour and nutrition.”
Hemp oil, often used topically for skin conditions, can be drizzled on salads and soups, while hemp flour, which is high in soluble and insoluble fibre and good for digestion, can be added to foods like bread - substitute about 20% hemp flour.
Find Hemp Foods Australia at the Mullumbimby Farmers' Market every Friday.

Is it Legal to Grow Hemp?

By Mel Bee


When it comes to the world’s plants, none is more widely used than hemp. And there seem to be no limits to its possibilities—from food to biofuel, textiles to paper, and even plastic. Add to this versatility the fact that it grows practically anywhere with no need for synthetic pesticides or fertilizers, there’s little wonder it’s such a popular plant!
But is it legal to grow hemp? There is no simple answer to that question. In short: yes, it is, and no, it isn’t. It depends on a number of factors, including where you are in the world. Let’s take a closer look!

History of Hemp

The history of hemp spans tens of thousands of years. It was used in ancient China both for practical purposes – providing paper, shoes and food – and for ceremonial occasions, when it would be burned as incense. Hemp’s psychoactive cousin, marijuana, would be smoked to open the gateways to the spiritual realm. In colonial times, hemp was prescribed to treat all manner of ailments from the common cough to arthritis and depression.
But much has changed since then. While hemp can still be used for a plethora of diverse things, the legality surrounding this humble plant shifted in the 1930s, when the Marijuana Tax Act decreed that the sale and cultivation of all cannabis varieties should be strictly regulated. In the ’70s, the Controlled Substances Act was signed, classifying all forms of cannabis, including the non-psychoactive hemp, as Schedule 1 substances.
No longer recognized as a cure-all, hemp was vilified and turned from nature’s Swiss army knife to an evil weed that should be mistrusted and eradicated.
Fast-forward to the present day, and the tide is shifting again—this time in hemp’s favor. After decades in the dark, hemp is emerging once more as a versatile plant with many potential uses. And with the added bonus of modern technology, this fast-growing plant can easily be transformed into building materials, food, paint, varnish, ink, oil, fuel, medicine… Even in the US, long a leader in the War on Drugs, hemp legislation is changing. Over 20 states have legalized the medical use of marijuana, and a handful have legalized its recreational use.

Hemp in the US

Currently, over 30 states have introduced pro-hemp legislation. Ten states (Colorado, Kentucky, Maine, North Dakota, Vermont, Oregon, Washington, California, West Virginia and Montana) have classified hemp as separate from marijuana and permit its cultivation. Other states, like Hawaii, Kentucky and Maryland, have passed bills authorizing hemp research. But despite more relaxed regulation in over half the country, the Drug Enforcement Agency has so far adamantly stuck to its outdated classification of hemp as a Schedule 1 Drug, which means it is illegal to grow.
And that’s a crying shame as the total retail value of all hemp products sold in the US is estimated at $573 million. But despite many states allowing the cultivation of hemp, farmers still risk raids by federal agents and jail time if they plant this crop because of the Federal Government’s failure to distinguish non-psychoactive hemp from marijuana. Most of the US’s hemp is imported from places where the cultivation of this plant is allowed and even encouraged.

Hemp in Canada

Thanks to the Industrial Hemp Regulation Program, launched in 1998, Canadian farmers are allowed to grow hemp for industrial use. Back in the ’80s, industrial hemp production was seen as a potential source of new agricultural and industrial jobs; there was also an increased need to develop alternative sources of fiber to be used for textiles, paper, animal bedding, etc. When research indicated that hemp could be successfully grown as a separate entity from marijuana, Health Canada moved to change the laws surrounding cannabis to allow its cultivation.

Hemp in the UK

Growing hemp in the UK is legal and fairly straightforward. All you need is a license from the Home Office and to follow some simple rules, like using European Union-approved seeds (containing negligible amounts of THC) and not planting crops in sensitive areas – for example, near a school. Hemp growers can also obtain financial support from the Fiber Processing Aid Scheme. One thing to note, however: Industrial hemp cultivation is not authorized for the purpose of growing hemp seeds, even though this nutritious snack is widely available in health food shops around the country.

Hemp in Australia

The Australian Government recognizes that hemp can make a decent contribution to the economy as an alternative crop and that this crop can be grown without compromising law and order—in other words, separately from psychoactive varieties of the plant. That’s why it introduced the Hemp Industry Act 2008, which allows farmers to grow hemp crops for fiber and oil production.

Hemp Around the World

Over 30 other countries around the world produce industrial hemp, including Spain, China, France, Russia and Austria. Unlike many other crops, hemp can grow practically anywhere, no matter the climate or environmental conditions. It is, after all, a weed. It requires little to no fertilizers or pesticides, making it a cheaper crop to plant and better for the soil. It also produces more fiber than other crops – 1 acre of hemp produces as much fiber as 2-3 acres of cotton. The same acreage can produce as much paper as 2-4 acres of trees – and hemp grows back much quicker! Hemp can be used to produce durable, eco-friendly plastic that does not take millions of years to decompose. Hemp seed oil isn’t just nice on your salad; it can be transformed into non-toxic fuel, varnish, paint, detergent, ink, lubricating oil… Clearly, hemp is a crop for the future—it’s no exaggeration to say that it could well save our planet!  

Hemp Hemp Hooray!

So, is it legal to grow hemp? That depends on where you are in the world. While the DEA sticks to its unfashionable classification, hemp farmers are taking a chance, even in states where it is legal to cultivate it. But the demand for hemp and hemp-based products is growing, and it’s to be hoped that this increase in popularity will spur a fundamental change in federal legislation.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Industrial hemp arrives in the mountains

By Frank Kracher

hemp a.jpg

History was made at the North Carolina-Tennessee border Friday night as the first permitted industrial hemp plants were trucked into the mountains.
The plants are part of a state-sanctioned pilot program to bring back a long abandoned industry.
The approval process to grow hemp started in March and is already moving forward. And the beginning stage being started just hours ago when a refrigerated truck carrying more than 6,700 plants pulled into the first rest stop along eastbound Interstate 40 in North Carolina.
The female plants are clones grown in Colorado that will be used by area mountain farmers to get the process going here. There are two strains that were cultured and then established in soil.
The idea is to manufacture everything from from fiber for clothing, to oil for homeopathic remedies and and an estimated 25,000 other uses.
The plants represent the rebirth of a hemp industry abandoned after World War II, an industry now legal -- with a permit -- in North Carolina.
"We call these our ladies, you know, so we're extremely excited about this, you know, the plants that these are going to generate," Carolina Hemp Co.'s Brian Morris said.
Carolina hemp Co. has been importing hemp-based products for years.
Morris believes industrial hemp needs to be utilized more and the process to grow it ought to be easier.
"If the regulations would loosen up and realize that there's really no threat here and (hemp) really should treated like tomatoes, then the industry will grow like it could and should," he said.
"Twenty-five-thousand different products that are all environmentally friendly, so, I mean, you can't ask for a better, more productive plant."
Industrial hemp was largely replaced by synthetic fibers after the war and banned when people started growing it at levels of potency exceeding the legal limit. 

5 Key Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana

By Shin Yun-bok

5 Key Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana

Here are the Main Differences Between Hemp and Weed!


Hemp and marijuana are grown for different goals, that is why the process of their cultivation is absolutely different.
Medical marijuana was bred selectively many years ago, and it was optimized to produce only female plants - which give buds at the flowering stage of their growth. These flower buds are the goal of medical marijuana cultivation. Marijuana is often cultivated indoors - under serious control.
Hemp is cultivated in the opposite way. Only male plants, which don't produce flowers, are of the interest of breeders. Hemp plants grow fast and are optimized to produce the largest harvest. Hemp is grown outdoors in large volumes, in the majority of cases, and that is one of the most important differences between hemp and marijuana.
5 Key Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana 1


Marijuana is probably one of the most ancient plants that were domesticated. People have been growing cannabis for recreational, religious or medical purposes for centuries in different parts of the world.
Cannabis plants were probably crossed with other plants with the same characteristics, producing hemp as a result. So the genetics of hemp and cannabis is different.

5 Key Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana 2


The illegal status of both hemp and marijuana made the process of research very difficult in North America. That is why Israel and other European countries were the pioneers of medical marijuana research for many years. Even THC, the most important cannabinoid, was discovered by an Israeli professor.
Fortunately, the situation with research is getting better, as weed has become legal in 30 American states. Scientists have begun extensively exploring health benefits of medical weed. The latest research revealed, that, marijuana can be effective for treating dementia.
Researchers keep revealing new interesting methods of hemp utilization. The University of Alberta has recently created a supercapacitor, using raw hemp material, making it possible to produce cheap and effective batteries from hemp! Hemp can also be utilized for creating renewable organic materials.

5 Key Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana 3

Psychoactive Properties

Marijuana has a unique chemical structure - with almost a hundred cannabinoids. THC is the most famous and most important cannabinoid - because it makes you high.
Hemp, on the contrary, has very small amounts of THC which means that hemp is non-psychoactive. This is one of the most important differences between hemp and marijuana. In Canada, for example, if a plant has less than 0.3% of THC, it is considered hemp, if there is more THC, then it's marijuana.
As for CBD, another important cannabinoid, hemp has the same and possibly bigger CBD levels.
This is a sample of hemp and fiber - which is produced from hemp.
5 Key Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana 4

Legal Status

Industrial hemp can be cultivated in more than 30 countries, excluding the USA. At the same time, many countries, such as Canada and China, benefit from cultivating and exporting hemp abroad. American hemp farming still remains an uncertainty.
Medical and recreational cannabis remains illegal in the majority of countries, however, the global public shift towards legalization is obvious. The USA made the greatest breakthrough, legalizing weed in 29 states, and this year Germany joined the company of legal countries.

Hemp takes root in New York’s Southern Tier

By Elizabeth A. Tomlin

New York State is leading the pack when it comes to bringing back industrial hemp — after becoming prohibited about 80 years ago, to be an agricultural option for farmers in the Southern Tier of the state.
In the first ever industrial Hemp Summit, hosted by Cornell University, NYS Agriculture Commissioner Richard Ball said, “Good things are happening in New York State and its great to be a part of it. I think we’re here today because New York recognizes the opportunity for industrial hemp as an emerging commodity for our agricultural producers and the community.”
“The Southern Tier is soaring!” agreed NYS Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. “New niches, new opportunities, we’re not just going to grow this, we’re going to take it to its end use right here in the Southern Tier.”
Legal impediments have been an obstacle for anyone interested in producing hemp in New York State.
Marc Privitera, Principal Engineer/ owner PreProcess, took part in the Summit panel of speakers. Privitera spoke about being unable to obtain quality seed for his program because of legal obstacles. He also said there is a chance of crops being confiscated due to authorities having unreliable information.
Although categorized as cannabis, industrial hemp does not have the THC content of typical marijuana.
THC levels must be below 0.3 to qualify as “industrial.” Privitera reported crops have been confiscated and burned in other parts of the country when THC levels test above the 0.3 level.
Ira Fair, General Manager of 21st Century Hemp, attended the Summit and addressed some obstacles to the development of the industry.
“Cannabis companies, such as 21st Century, have a very difficult time finding banking and insurance services,” commented Fair, adding the federal government’s prohibition against hemp and “public ignorance as to the true nature of hemp” add to the obstacles confronting the industry.
21st Century Hemp was founded in the Summer of 2015 and converted to an LLC in December of 2016.
“Our focus is on creating a public awareness of hemp through community outreach and education, developing the infrastructure necessary for the industry to grow, and development of a new generation of processing equipment that is smaller, more portable, and more efficient than existing equipment,” explained Fair.
Benjamin Banks-Dobson, Old Mud Creek Farm, Hudson, NY, commented on problems resulting from not being able to use the same harvesting equipment he would normally use on other crops.
“How do we mechanically handle this?” Dobson asked.
Dobson, who is researching carbon effects of hemp residue on soil and the use of hemp as a cover crop, also had questions about weed control.
“I have lots of concerns,” he admitted, remarking that he was looking to Cornell to come up with guidance for successful production and harvesting of the crop.
Christine Smart, Interim Director School of Integrative Plant Science, Cornell University, said there are also concerns about varieties that will be sustainable in New York and will also be insect and disease resistant.
Another concern is that there are no legally labeled fungicides, herbicides or pesticides to use with the crop, which, closely related to hops, is also susceptible to diseases such as Downy Mildew. There is also no fertilizer approved for use.
More research is needed to establish criteria for the establishment of the crop and this research will now be intensive.
Historically, research programs were restricted to colleges, such as Cornell University and SUNY Morrisville. However, because of recent changes in attitudes toward the industrial hemp plant, agricultural development programs are pursuing industrial hemp as a commodity crop.
Because of new directions, six private entities have been added to the list and have been issued permits through the Industrial Hemp Agricultural Research Pilot Program. These permits allow private entities to pursue processing, manufacturing and marketing industrial hemp.
Those receiving permits included 21st Century Hemp and RIT, Rochester, NY; Cavallaro Farms Goshen, NY; JD Farms, Eaton, NY; Plant Science Labs, Buffalo, NY; PreProcess, Ellisburg, NY and Old Mud Creek Farm, Hudson, NY.
$200,000 funding had already been awarded to JD Farms through Governor Cuomo’s 2016 Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiative. This grant was earmarked to help to establish an industrial biomass processing plant to be used for processing commodity crops such as hay and industrial hemp.
“Plant research provides tools and opportunities for our farms to address a whole host of challenges facing agriculture,” said New York Farm Bureau President David Fisher. “This includes expanding the state’s industrial hemp program to capitalize on potential economic development for agriculture in this state. The ability to diversify and make new crops available to farmers will be beneficial to our members, and New York Farm Bureau looks forward to continuing to partner with the Governor and his administration on this initiative.”
Kathryn J. Boor, the Ronald P. Lynch Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, realizes the potential to boost New York’s Southern Tier agricultural profits from development of the new industry. “As the Southern Tier has the largest number of farms of any New York State region among the economic development regions identified by Governor Cuomo, it is critically important that we work together to seek out opportunities to increase income for our farmers so that they can remain profitably in business,” commented Boor. “Various members of our legislature and business sectors have identified products made from hemp, and particularly oils, fibers and medicinal products, as offering timely market opportunity for New York State. Cornell has contributed suggestions during development of new New York State regulatory considerations for hemp, and we were among the early entities to obtain a permit that would allow us to grow hemp for experimental purposes. We need to establish that the ‘market pull’ is in the right place at the right time for those who wish to grow hemp.”
“The hemp industry has the potential to change the agricultural landscape in New York State,” agreed Fair. “I see the hemp becoming a major factor in the creation of jobs throughout the supply chain — from farm to consumer.”
Hochul said Governor Cuomo stands firmly behind the industry and vowed to continue to promote the success of the budding industry by identifying and eliminating barriers and expanding research.
“This will be on fire!” Hochul remarked. “I guarantee that that someday your grand kids are going to look back and say, ‘when did all that start?’ We’ll say it happened right here in April 2017, when people realized that we could do so much more by removing the barriers that has kept this industry back!”
Other industrial hemp advocates speaking at the NYS Hemp Summit included Assemblyman Bill Magee; Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo; Senator Thomas O’Mara; SUNY Sullivan Interim President Jay Quaintance, and Dr. David Rogers, President SUNY Morrisville.

Australian hemp growers ready for good times as industry expands

By Penny Evans

Hunter Valley grown hemp plant

Eighty years after hemp cultivation was banned in Australia, the industry is enjoying a second coming.
Sir Joseph Banks sent hemp seeds on the First Fleet so the fledgling colony could establish a crop to help make rope and sails.
However, drug concerns led to cultivation being banned in 1937.
In the background of a ban on human consumption in Australia, which has just been overturned, the industry has been slowly rebuilding for export for the past 20 years.
Hunter Valley-based farmer Bob Doyle, the head of the Australian Industrial Hemp Alliance, said Australian growers have been exporting hemp seeds as a food product for several years, even under the domestic human consumption ban.
"Australia is just catching up. The rest of the western world has had the food approved for a long time," Mr Doyle said.
Newcastle organic shop owner Phil Maher agrees that the seeds are very popular.
"We get inquiries about hemp seeds every day, but we can't talk about their fantastic benefits. So we point people to other avenues to get the appropriate information," he said.
In Australia, they can only be sold as a component of skincare products.
But high in protein and omega 3, they are tipped to become the next superfood on local supermarket shelves.
"They are really, really versatile, so they don't need any preparation," Mr Maher said.
"You can just sprinkle them on food, or put them in a smoothie, or add them to your cooking."
The industry is now predicted to double in size over the next 12 months after clearing the major legislative hurdle.
"At the moment most of that grain will end up being imported," Mr Doyle said.
"Australia is actually not ready to grow enough of its own."
The industry has struggled to expand as farmers battled restrictive legislation.
"To date it's been the government and it's been from police. They've been the ones holding up food approval," Mr Doyle said.
He said the problem is that the low-THC industrial plant looks the same as the plant used as an illicit drug.
Now that Federal Government approval is through it is hoped that NSW state legislation will be finalised by the end of the year.
As a fibre product, the outside of the stalk, known as the bast, is exported to be made into rope and other textiles.
The inside pith is being processed domestically as a building product, to be used in walls.
"This is a great opportunity for the farmers in New South Wales, we know this industry is worth about $150 million in the United States and our farmers can get a piece of that now right here," said NSW Primary Industries Minister Niall Blair.

Medicinal industry still on the outer

Mr Doyle said that as Australia is already very good at growing grain crops it would be relatively easy to transition to the crop.
"From a fibre point of view, people compare it to growing cotton," he said.
"There will be a need for more growers, without any doubt to meet the demand there is a need for more growers right across the country.
"It's one plant with three very good uses — food, fibre and medicinal."
While the hemp industry is looking to expand for food and fibre, roadblocks remain in the medicinal sector.
The state's chief scientist, Mary O'Kane, recently said there are still legal hurdles around the local production of medicinal cannabis.
At the moment, terminally ill patients have to rely on imported products or the black market.
"New South Wales is leading the nation on medicinal cannabis trials," said Minister Niall Blair.
"We are doing it the appropriate way, with the appropriate agencies involved, and that's something other states could take stock of."

Nevada Legislature Approves Measure to Legalize Hemp

By Anthony Martinelli

Legislation that would legalize hemp throughout Nevada has been given approval by the state’s full legislature.

Senate Bill 396 received unanimous approval in the Senate late last month, and it has now been passed by the full Assembly with a 34 to 5 vote. With it being approved through both chambers, it will now be sent to Governor Brian Sandoval for consideration. Sandoval has the option of signing it into law, allowing it to become law without his signature, or vetoing it (if he does veto it the legislature could override it with a 2/3rds majority).
Senate Bill 396 would expand upon a current law that allows hemp to be grown in the state for research purposes by creating “a separate program for the growth and cultivation of industrial hemp and produce agricultural hemp seed in this State”; this would allow hemp to be grown for commercial – and not exclusively research – purposes.
The measure “requires a person who wishes to grow or handle industrial hemp or produce agricultural hemp seed to register with the Department [of Agriculture”, and “requires the testing of commodities or products made using industrial hemp by an independent testing laboratory”
The bill also “allows a facility for the production of edible marijuana products or marijuana-infused products and a medical marijuana dispensary to acquire industrial hemp from a registered grower or handler”, and “allows a facility for the production of edible marijuana products or marijuana-infused products to use industrial hemp to manufacture edible marijuana products and marijuana-infused product”.
In addition, Senate Bill 396 “allows a medical marijuana dispensary to dispense industrial hemp and edible marijuana products and marijuana-infused products containing industrial hemp”, and  “requires the Division of Public and Behavioral Health of the Department of Health and Human Services to adopt regulations setting forth minimum requirements for industrial hemp which is used by a facility for the production of edible marijuana products or marijuana-infused products to manufacture such products or which is dispensed by a medical marijuana dispensary”.
Cllick here for the full text of Senate Bill 396

Friday, May 26, 2017

Malawi Police uproot hemp plantation in Northern Region


Senior Superintendent Charles Mpezeni of Rumphi Police Station said police were tipped-off that the suspect was cultivating Indian hemp in his garden, which prompted police investigation.

Malawi Police uproot hemp  plantation in Northern Region

Malawi Police in Rumphi have arrested 40 year old James Mfune from Traditional Authority Chikulamayembe in Rumphi for cultivating Indian hemp, which is illegal.
Senior Superintendent Charles Mpezeni of Rumphi Police Station said police were tipped-off that the suspect was cultivating Indian hemp in his garden, which prompted police investigation.
“We received a tip from well-wishers that someone was cultivating Indian hemp and we organised an operation which led to the arrest of the suspect and the uprooting of 405 plants of cannabis in his garden. The suspect planted Indian hemp on an anthill which was in the middle of his maize field. This is where the plants of cannabis were uprooted,” said Mpezeni.
The police officer said Mfune was arrested on the spot and charged with cultivating Indian hemp contrary to the Dangerous Drugs Act.
“The suspect is in police custody and has been charged with the offence of cultivating Indian hemp, contrary to Regulation 7 of the Dangerous Drugs Act,” he said.
Mfune comes from Chipereka Village in the area of Traditional Authority Chikulamayembe in the district.
In a related development, Police in Lilongwe have arrested two people for being found with a backpack and two expand bags full of Cannabis Sativa.

The two have been identified as 27 year old Vincent Tembo of Kaseleka village T/A Kaomba in Kasungu and 18 year old Yamikani Jenikala of Benjamin village, T. A Nthache also from Kasungu district.
Lilongwe Police Station spokesperson Inspector Kingsley Dandaula said the two were arrested at Bunda roadblock on May 24, 2017.
“Police officers on duty stopped Ulemu Bus registration number BU 4875 travelling to Blantyre. Upon conducting a routine search, they came across a backpack and two suitcases full of Indian hemp. The discovery of the owners of the bags was made following a tip from a well wisher,” said Dandaula.
Dandaula said it is important for the public to be informing the police on criminal activities so that the police may act on the same.
“It is vital to tip police officers on suspicious activities. In this case, if the suspects were not arrested, the hemp would have reached the market and be sold to a lot of people including minors,” explained Dandaula.
The hemp has been sent to Chitedze Research Station for examination. Currently, the two suspects are in custody waiting for trial.

NC Industrial Hemp Commission to Host Public Online Meeting on May 30

By Sandy Stewart

Farmer harvesting industrial hemp. Source: NC Industrial Hemp Association,
Farmer harvesting industrial hemp. Source: NC Industrial Hemp Association,

The Industrial Hemp Commission will hold a public meeting via telephone conference call/webinar to review and approve research pilot program applications.
This online meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 30, 2017, beginning at 10:30am. Note that meetings may be an hour or two, and if the Committee goes into Executive Session, other meeting participants may wait for their return in most cases.
Access to the conference call can be made at or by calling 1.408.638.0968 or 1.646.558.8656; neither number is toll-free. The meeting ID is 862-633-505. Participants will be prompted to enter their name and email address to enter the meeting via the website, or prompted for a unique participant ID for the call. (They should press # to access the call.)
The NC General Assembly passed Senate Bill 313 in 2015, allowing the creation of the Industrial Hemp Commission to develop the rules and licensing structure necessary to stay within federal laws. The Industrial Hemp Commission adopted temporary rules in February, setting up the application requirements and process.
For meeting questions, contact Lori Pfister of the NC Industrial Hemp Commission office at 919.707.3236.
Information on the state’s Industrial Hemp Commission and the Industrial Hemp Pilot Program may be found at

Hemp in food for horses and chickens? Maybe.

By Nick Coltrain

Cannabis is more than the often-smoked flower. A new Colorado law created a study group to examine its use as animal feed. 

A Colorado task force is studying the potential use of hemp in animal feed. 

Cannabis: It’s not just for medicinal or recreational purposes. At least that's what one commercial grower hopes.
New West Genetics is hoping non-THC-containing varieties could be used in animal feed. A new state law carried by Fort Collins’ Rep. Jeni Arndt is a step closer to making that a reality.
The law, which passed in the 2017 legislative session, creates a task force to study the application of industrial hemp in animal feed.
Arndt, a Democrat, said she got involved because she saw the emerging markets and wanted to help move hemp past “funky shirts and hats.” She said she hoped the task would lead to the market opening up for producers.
It’s also one more avenue where Colorado is working to tap the full benefits of cannabis. It follows an effort by Colorado State University to better understand how non-psychoactive cannabinoids may be able to help dogs with ailments such as seizures and arthritis.
New West Genetics pushed for the progress on industrial hemp — specifically as animal feed — after it received interest from feed providers.
But regulations and a lack of science behind the request put a pause on pursuing it, CEO Wendy Mosher said.
Hemp is nutrient-rich and doesn't take a lot of water to grow, Mosher said. Add in its relative newness to the market and it's easy to see why it's garnering interest in Colorado and beyond.
But the science hasn't caught up, she said. She's hoping more peer-reviewed and validated studies emerge on the issue.
Hollis Glenn, director of the inspection and consumer services division of the Colorado Department of Agriculture, said the task force will take a holistic look at industrial hemp in animal feed, from the impact on animals to the economics of it and the legal framework in which it would operate.
"We're not advocating one position or another, except that Colorado ranchers and farmers are protected while affording them the opportunity to explore new markets," Glenn said.
He praised industrial hemp producers in the state for their professionalism as the market emerges. They want to hemp to be treated like carrots or corn, he said, but accept that getting to that point means a deeper look at their crop.
Colorado also can be a leader in industrial hemp, particularly as markets for it emerge regardless of regulatory framework, Glenn said. Other states will likely be involved in the task force and an invite was extended to the Food and Drug Administration.
He stressed the group will not generate scientific data. Some of the questions Glenn plans for the group to answer include how the U.S. Department of Agriculture might inspect cattle being fed hemp or what uses the different parts of the plant might have in animal feed.
Mosher said she's seen promise for the use of hemp in animal feed, particularly for the sheen of horses' coats and the health of chicken eggs. Hemp’s wealth of fats are known for helping those traits, she said.
Her business has been in operation since Amendment 64 passed and it aims to create more stable genetics for the crop and help production of it become more sustainable for market. Animal feed is one potential outcome.
Mosher said she offered her company’s services to the Colorado Department of Agriculture, which will convene the task force, likely later this summer. A recommendation from the group is expected by the end of the year.
“There’s so much background knowledge to explore with the plant,” Mosher said. “It’s very much been the cart before the horse, where people were using this and saying, ‘Hey, it’s working,’ but not knowing what aspect of the plant was doing what.”
A federal law passed in 2014 already allows industrial hemp to be researched. In 2016, another federal law barred the Department of Justice from being able to use its money to go after industrial hemp producers — though there’s still some fingers being crossed on that end.
Mosher said she’s seen attitudes change “tremendously” as it pertains to plant, especially on the coasts. And if it proves a boon at the industrial level of grows, she expects the middle of the country to take note.
It also helps boost bipartisanship, she said, praising responses from Republican and Democratic senators and congressmen alike. U.S. Sens. Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner, a Democrat and Republican, respectively, and Rep. Jared Polis, a Democrat whose district includes Fort Collins, have all recently sponsored bills in their chambers to give the marijuana industry access to banking, among other initiatives.

Throwback Thursday: The hazy story of Bruin Libertarians’ marijuana-smoking event ‘Hemp Fest’



(Daily Bruin archives)

Twenty years ago, a cloud of marijuana smoke lingered above the steps of Kerckhoff Hall as students enjoyed the warm sunlight and shared an abundance of pot. The occasion: Bruin Libertarians was sponsoring a smoking event called “Hemp Fest” for weed enthusiasts on campus.
On April 23, 1997, the Daily Bruin, which was still in the experimental stages of its online platform, published a story about this Bruin Libertarian marijuana-smoking event to fundraise its undergraduate student government slate’s campaign.
Craig Ruben, a UCLA alumnus and owner of the hemp product store 2000 B.C., attended the smoke-out to educate students about hemp’s ability to go beyond recreational use. According to the Daily Bruin’s story, Ruben educated students about how hemp, which is the fiber of marijuana plants, can sometimes be used for fossil fuels, paper and food.
Ruben even noted the drug’s profitability and proudly stated that the cannabis industry allowed him to earn more money than his friends earned through traditional jobs.
Taking notice of this, Bruin Libertarians partnered with Ruben’s business to raise campaign money for UCLA’s student elections. At the smoky Hemp Fest, the group organized a “bong raffle” and students were able to win multiple hemp products as prizes. The Bruin reported Claire Lagao, a third-year psychology student at the time, went home with one-eighth of an ounce of some precious maryjane.
The event did have its naysayers, however. Gregg Tipton, a member the then-Bruin Victory Fellowship, objected to the Bruin Libertarians’ philosophy of letting students act of their own free will with little regard for the consequences.
“Where do we draw the line?” Tipton said to The Bruin.
Justin Sobodash, then-president of Bruin Libertarians, however, merely dismissed Tipton as “the burn-in-hell guy” and the crowd returned to burning some of its own stuff.
It’s worth noting the event went uninterrupted, as no one cared to notify the university police department, despite weed being illegal on campus. When asked why they didn’t show up on the scene, campus police responded with one of the best defenses possible:
“There are a lot of things on campus we don’t know about,” said then-Sergeant Rick Sanchez.
How comforting. Students happily passed along pipes and joints without fear of punishment and Bruin Libertarians raised its campaign funds.
Twenty years later, however, you don’t hear much about Bruin Libertarians on campus. And California legalized marijuana in November with the passage of Proposition 64. However, holding another Hemp Fest on campus would still be against university policies.
Actually, that might be dependent upon the UCPD having knowledge of “a lot of things on campus.”