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Kentucky will begin accepting applications for 2020 Hemp Programs in mid-November

Kentucky’s hemp program is just about open for business.

The state said that it will begin accepting applications for growers and processors wishing to receive a license to participate in the program beginning in mid-November.

According to the Associated Press, Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said the application period for growers and processors will both begin on November 15 and run to March 15 the following year, with the state aiming to ultimately move toward a year-round application process.


Hemp licenses issued by State 2019

  • The 29 U.S. states having reporting licensed hemp cultivation acreage total nearly half a million acres in combined cultivation land area, a massive increase over 2018's combined U.S. total of just over 100,000 acres.
  • Colorado leads the nation in hemp cultivation and processing land area with over 80,000 acres reported.
  • Oregon, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Montana lead in hemp program expansion efforts.
  • Tennessee leads in total hemp licenses issued in 2019.
  • At least 70% of the 2019 U.S. hemp harvest is intended for extract production.
  • California is poised to be the top-producing hemp state for both conventional and organic production as thousands of acres have already been planted in 2019.

Is hemp Kentucky's new cash crop?

As Kentucky looks to find a replacement for tobacco as a cash crop, Morehead State University is aiding the endeavor with research on hemp.

The Derrickson Agricultural Complex is home to the only hemp operation in Rowan County, where MSU associate professor Brent Rogers works with students on a variety of hemp research projects.

“There is kind of three prongs to hemp research here in the state right now and it’s fiber, seed and CBD,” said Rogers. “What we are growing is used to extract what is called CBD’s, cannabidiols, used medicinally.”

Morehead State University began hemp research in 2017 and has focused on three projects: herbicide research, a fertility study and fungicide research.


$5.8 million Kentucky plant will engineer hemp into wood

HempWood will be available in blocks, pre-sawn boards, flooring, and finished products such as cutting boards and skateboards at prices lower than oak, the company says on its website.
The Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority approved $300,000 in tax incentives for the operation. The incentives, based on performance, will allow Fibonacci to keep some of its investment by meeting job and investment targets. The company will also receive no-cost recruitment and job placement servies from the Kentucky Skills Network.

Kentucky’s medical marijuana would be tightly regulated

Although the question of whether to legalize medical marijuana in Kentucky has not been given much consideration over the past several years, the issue, which is supported by Governor Matt Bevin, appears to be gaining some traction in the 2019 legislative process.

However, while bill would allow tens of thousands of patients to use marijuana for a variety of health conditions, the proposed program design might not be exactly what most patients were hoping for.


Committee advances medical marijuana bill in Kentucky

A bill to legalize medical marijuana in Kentucky won initial committee approval Wednesday night after lawmakers heard emotional testimony from people battling chronic pain and debilitating medical conditions.

The bill, which would make marijuana legal in the bluegrass state for medical purposes only, cleared the House Judiciary Committee on a 16-1 vote after a two-hour hearing.Advertisement

With only a few days left in this year's legislative session, the measure faces tough odds of becoming law. The bill heads to the Republican-led House next.

"It's not too late," said Rep. Jason Nemes, a leading sponsor of the bill. "Where there's a will there's a way. We have enough days. We're going to need a good push. It's not probable."


Kentucky lawmaker introduces bill downgrading personal possession of marijuana penalty

A bill introduced in the Kentucky General Assembly looks to make possession of marijuana for personal use subject to a non-criminal fine instead of a criminal offense.

State Senator Jimmy Higdon (R-District 14), introduced SB82 last week. Under the proposed law, a person 18-years-old or older would be able to possess one ounce or less of marijuana in plant form, 5 grams or less of marijuana resin/concentrate, or products containing 300 grams or less of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).


The details of Kentucky’s new medical marijuana bill have been revealed

Perhaps all Kentucky needs to move forward with medical marijuana legislation is a 78-year-old Republican lawmaker to admit he threw his prescription pain meds in the trash—and smoked a joint instead. Cannabis advocates are hoping that’s the case after Wednesday’s announcement of Kentucky’s House Bill 136, which would make cannabis legal for those with debilitating illnesses and excruciating pain.

“For those that don’t know, I had colon cancer seven years ago, and when I left the hospital, they gave me that nice bottle of Oxycontin,” said Daniel DeVerl “Malano” Seum, the state senator, at a press conference. “I threw it in the garbage can and went home and smoked a joint.”


Kentucky quickly submits its hemp oversight plan to USDA

Kentucky got off to a quick start toward putting its oversight strategy in place for hemp production on Thursday when its agriculture commissioner filed a plan with federal regulators — the same day hemp was legalized as a farm commodity.

State Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles submitted the regulatory plan to the U.S. Department of Agriculture on the same day President Donald Trump signed the new federal farm bill into law. The measure that cleared Congress removes hemp from the list of federally controlled substances. It treats the low-THC version of the cannabis plant like any other agricultural crop. THC is the cannabis compound that gives marijuana its high.


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