America’s First Hemp Crop Harvest In Almost 60 Years Begins In Colorado
via The Huffington Post | By Matt Ferner
In the 1700s, American farmers were required by law to grow hemp in Virginia and the other colonies. It was a widely used crop for hundreds of years in the United States. Cut to 1957 when the U.S. government banned hemp over confusion about its relationship to marijuana, and the plant from which the paper for the The Declaration of Independence was sourced was gone from America’s soil.
Back in May, Springfield, Colo. farmer Ryan Lofin planted 55 acres of hemp — the first hemp crop planted in the U.S. in nearly 60 years. Last week, Lofin and others harvested the historic hemp plants by hand as advocates watched on, Westword reported.
The passage of Amendment 64 in Colorado last November, which famously legalized marijuana for recreational use by adults, also allows for the commercial growing of hemp.
And now that Attorney General Eric Holder recently announced that the Department of Justice will allow Colorado’s new marijuana laws to go into effect, this harvest may be the symbolic first that restarts a once-booming American industry, if other farmers choose to follow Lofin’s lead.
“This is monumental for our industry,” said Bruce Perlowin, chief executive of Hemp Inc., to The Denver Post back when Lofin first planted his crop. “It will unlock a clean industrial revolution that will be good for the economy, good for jobs and good for the environment.”
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