Industrial hemp could be Colorado’s next cash crop. But until rules are crafted for the growing and processing of the plant, state officials are telling would-be hemp farmers to wait. KUNC’s Luke Runyon has more.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

The state’s first hemp crop went into the ground last week in the southeastern town of Springfield, just a few days after state lawmakers passed rules for the sale and taxation of recreational marijuana. What’s not finished is a regulatory framework for industrial hemp. The plant is mostly used for its fiber, in products like clothing and lotions.

Ron Carleton is with the Colorado Department of Agriculture. He says his office phone has been ringing off the hook, with farmers wanting to know how soon they can put hemp in the ground.

“A lot of folks believe that industrial hemp has considerable promise and so they’re interested in when they can start.”

Carleton cautions farmers against jumping into the hemp game too quickly. It’s still illegal at the federal level. That kept Yuma County farmer Michael Bowman from planting hemp this spring.

“The risk of getting caught in this federal web is small, but it’s not nonexistent.”

State officials have until March of next year to come up with rules for governing hemp growers.

 

Comments are closed.

News

Getty Images
October 22, 2019 | NPR · House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has announced the launch of a formal impeachment inquiry after months of expressing caution. Here are all the members who have come out on the record in support of the move.
 

AP
October 22, 2019 | NPR · Fewer children are dying globally, but a new study finds geographic disparities still exist within many countries.
 

NPR
October 22, 2019 | NPR · The Census Bureau hopes to hire around a half million workers by next spring to complete the national head count. But it’s running into trouble with low unemployment and background-check delays.
 

Arts & Life

 New York Review Books
October 22, 2019 | FA · Daniel Mendelsohn is a living answer to the question, “What will a degree in Classics do for you?” His new essay collection, Ecstasy and Terror, “cross-pollinates” the classics with popular culture.
 

Kaya Press
October 22, 2019 | NPR · Mimi Lok’s debut story collection — a perceptive look at the connections we make and fail to make — doesn’t read like a debut. Lok writes with the self-assuredness of a literary veteran.
 

HBO
October 22, 2019 | NPR · The original 1986 Watchmen comic was built on a fear of nuclear holocaust; Lindelof’s new HBO adaptation takes racism as its central evil, opening with a reconstruction of the 1921 Tulsa massacre.
 

Music

Getty Images
October 22, 2019 | NPR · The British conductor, harpsichordist and scholar helped reignite interest in works by composers like Monteverdi — but he also championed new works and wrote notable film scores of his own.
 

Courtesy of the artist
October 22, 2019 | NPR · Likewise comes out Jan. 31. Its first single brings empathy and courage to a nightmarish dream.
 

WXPN
October 21, 2019 | WXPN-FM · Together with three of his former banjo students, Joe Troop creates music that combines the Latin American influences of his adopted home with the bluegrass he grew up on.
 

Get the KRCC iPhone App

The Writer's Almanac

Radiolab