August 08, 2005
U.S. Bill To Re-Legalize Hemp Farming
Via Sustainablog, this article at hemp.com gives us some possibly good news: For the first time since the federal government outlawed hemp farming in the United States, a federal bill has been introduced that would remove restrictions on the cultivation of non-psychoactive Industrial Hemp.
At a Capitol Hill lunch on June 23 to mark the introduction of H.R. 3037, the Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2005, about 100 congressional staff feasted on Bahama Hemp nut Crusted Wild Salmon and Fuji Fennel Hemp seed Salad. The five course gourmet hemp meal was prepared by Executive Chef Dennis Cicero of the New York City based Galaxy Global Eatery http://www.galaxyglobaleatery.comWere this to pass, it would mean a (finally) logical step towards sustainability and a profitable push for U.S. farmers. Hemp is sustainable because it grows quickly and could replace trees (which take decades or centuries to grow and are used as homes for multiple species, some endangered) as a paper stock, and it could replace many other non-sustainable agricultural products as a means for weaving clothes. Hemp is also edible, and there are many extremely healthy foods made from it. Hemp end-products are legal in the U.S., but actually growing the stuff is not. The D.E.A. actually tried to make hemp-based foods illegal a while back, but the measure was overturned.
At the luncheon the chief sponsor of the bill Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas.) described how H.R. 3037 will remove federal barriers to U.S. hemp farming by returning the regulation of hemp to the states. "It is unfortunate that the federal government has stood in the way of American farmers, including many who are struggling to make ends meet, competing in the global industrial hemp market," said Dr. Paul. "Indeed the founders of our nation, some of who grew hemp, surely would find that federal restrictions on farmers growing a safe and profitable crop on their own land are inconsistent with the constitutional guarantee of a limited, restrained federal government. Therefore, I urge my colleagues to stand up for American farmers and cosponsor the Industrial Hemp Farming Act." Dr. Paul was joined by four original co-sponsors including Reps. Sam Farr (D-Calif.), Pete Stark (D-Calif.), Jim McDermott (D-Wash.), George Miller (D-Calif.) and Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.). The bill may be viewed here
Hemp oil is healthy and full of anti-oxidants and can even be used as a fuel for vehicles and homes. Hell, Henry Ford built a car that was "grown" from hemp and a combination of other annual crops and designed to run on hemp fuel!
When Henry Ford told a New York Times reporter that ethyl alcohol was "the fuel of the future" in 1925, he was expressing an opinion that was widely shared in the automotive industry. "The fuel of the future is going to come from fruit like that sumach out by the road, or from apples, weeds, sawdust -- almost anything," he said. "There is fuel in every bit of vegetable matter that can be fermented. There's enough alcohol in one year's yield of an acre of potatoes to drive the machinery necessary to cultivate the fields for a hundred years."The diesel engine was originally created to run on biodiesel - primarily from hemp!
For more on hemp and its gazillion uses, go to Hemp.com. Also, look for large chemical multinationals like DuPont to lobby against this bill. They're the ones who killed hemp in the first place in America.
Posted by George at August 8, 2005 11:49 AM