Agriculture Chairman Seeks State Hemp Program

Dan Cooper Hemp, Legislative

With officials seeing a potentially lucrative industry, Senate Agriculture Chairman Ben Albritton, R-Wauchula, is proposing creation of a state hemp program. Albritton on Thursday filed a bill that would set up the program under the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The bill came after Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried last week named Holly Bell as the state’s first director …


The Hype on Hemp

Abbey Taylor Hemp, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Abbey Taylor and Ernie Neff If you’ve ever told somebody you’re thinking about growing industrial hemp on some of your land, you’ve probably gotten raised eyebrows, smirks, chuckles or outright guffaws in response. Or someone might have said, “Great, you’re going to be growing pot! Invite me over when you get your first crop!” That fun reaction is understandable. …


Commissioner Nikki Fried Appoints Holly Bell as Director of Cannabis

Dan Cooper Hemp, Industry News Release

Commissioner Nicole “Nikki” Fried announced her appointment of Holly Bell as the Director of Cannabis. Bell’s selection comes after a national search and interviews with multiple finalists for the position. In her role as Director of Cannabis, Bell will oversee the development of rules, work directly with scientific experts, and ensure Commissioner Fried’s vision for cannabis in Florida continues moving forward. Bell will work closely with the Department’s …


Industrial Hemp A Featured Topic at UF/IFAS Ag Policy Conference Feb. 26 in Balm

Abbey Taylor Hemp, Industry News Release, Top Posts

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Industrial hemp may soon be a financially significant crop in Florida, and an expert with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences will discuss some of the challenges and opportunities related to this fledgling industry at the fourth annual Florida Agricultural Policy Outlook Conference in Balm. The conference happens 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. …


New Crops Proposed After Michael Devastation

Dan Cooper Hemp, Hops, Industry News Release

Hemp and hops are being promoted among alternatives for crops wiped out by Hurricane Michael in the eastern Panhandle. Glen Aiken, director of the University of Florida’s North Florida Research and Education Center, said Monday the need for alternatives has grown as farmers in an eight-county region suffered most of the estimated $1.5 billion hit to the state’s agriculture industry …


Applications Now Available for Pilot Industrial Hemp Production

Dan Cooper Hemp, Industry News Release

The Alabama Department of Agriculture & Industries (ADAI) is now accepting applications from eligible producers, farmers, and universities interested in growing industrial hemp.  ADAI is also accepting applications from prospective industrial hemp processors. In 2016, the Alabama Legislature passed the Alabama Industrial Hemp Research Program Act, Section 2-8-380 Code of Alabama 1975, tasking the Department with the development of a …


UF Program Probing Hemp Production

Abbey Taylor Hemp, Research, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

Industrial hemp could be Florida’s next big specialty crop. The University of Florida (UF) Industrial Hemp Pilot Program is tasked with figuring out how to successfully grow the crop in the Sunshine State. During the 2018 Citrus Expo, Zachary Brym outlined the program objectives and how growers can get involved. Brym is an associate professor at the UF Tropical Research …


Farm Bill Helps Pave Way for Hemp Production

Abbey Taylor Farm Bill, Hemp, Legislative, Top Posts

The farm bill has passed through the House and the Senate and received President Trump’s signature on Dec. 20. While some agricultural industries were let down, other industries may have an opportunity to thrive. According to Jerry Fankhauser, assistant director of the University of Florida’s Florida Agricultural Experiment Station, the farm bill includes language that will take industrial hemp off …