Monday, August 28, 2006

Hemp, good for Economy

From Raw Story

Hemp bill some see as potential windfall for California farmers
waits for Gov. Schwarzenegger's signature or veto

An industrial hemp bill that some see as "potential windfall for California farmers" waits for Governor Schwarzenegger's signature or veto, reports The New York Times on Monday.

"The bill, known as AB 1147 or the California Industrial Hemp Farming Act, is headed for the governor's desk, where it will be vetoed or signed by late September, the governor's press office said Thursday," The Santa Cruz Sentinel reported a few days ago.

"Demand for hemp products such as clothing, food, body care, paper and even auto parts has been growing rapidly in recent years, with the U.S. hemp market now exceeding an estimated $270 million in annual retail sales," the press release continues. "The new law would give farmers the ability to legally supply U.S. manufacturers with hemp seed, oil and fiber and would not weaken anti-drug laws."

Charles Meyer’s politics are as steady and unswerving as the rows of pima cotton on his Central Valley farm. With his work-shirt blue eyes and flinty Clint Eastwood demeanor, he is staunchly in favor of the war in Iraq, against gun control and believes people unwilling to recite the Pledge of Allegiance should be kicked out of America, and fast.

But what gets him excited is the crop he sees as a potential windfall for California farmers: industrial hemp, or Cannabis sativa. The rapidly growing plant with a seemingly infinite variety of uses is against federal law to grow because of its association with its evil twin, marijuana.

“Industrial hemp is a wholesome product,” said Mr. Meyer, 65, who says he has never worn tie-dye and professes a deep disdain for “dope.”

“The fact we’re not growing it is asinine,” Mr. Meyer said.

Links: Hemp Car

Hemp Nation

me in the hEEmp

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