Yesterday the House and Senate Agricultural Committees reached an agreement on the 2018 Farm Bill, and it appears that the news is good for America's hemp farmers.
The 2018 Farm Bill will include a provision to legalizing hemp farming in the United States. The hemp legalization amendment was originally only included in the Senate version of the bill while the House version left it out. But when the two chambers of the legislature met to figure out the final form of the bill, the Senate version won out and hemp legalization was included.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who originally introduced the bill to legalize hemp farming, celebrated the decision:
Thanks for your hard work, @SenPatRoberts, for our farmers, rural communities and all Americans. Pleased that my provision to legalize industrial hemp is included in the Farm Bill. https://t.co/FSLY3CugIN— Leader McConnell (@senatemajldr) November 29, 2018
Hemp is a close relative of cannabis, and while it contains no THC or psychotropic substances, it was still banned by the federal government when marijuana was made illegal. Many have called for hemp farming to be legalized, and several states have actually taken steps to do so, but now this new bill make it legal across the United States.
It's not currently clear how different the hemp farming wording will be from the original Senate version. Many are wondering if a hotly debated provision that would ban people with drug convictions from working in the hemp industry will be included in the final bill.
The final form of the Farm Bill still needs to be voted on by the Senate and the House again, and then President Donald Trump will decide whether or not to sign it. But considering it's already passed both chambers already, it's unlikely that it will fail.
(h/t Marijuana Moment)