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A bill to legalize industrial hemp production is headed to Gov. Pat McCrory.

The Senate approved the legislation Tuesday after it was introduced and approved in the House a day earlier.

The hemp bill replaced Senate Bill 313 – which originally dealt with license plates – as a last-minute addition to the legislative calendar. Hemp production is currently banned in North Carolina, but if Governor McCrory signs the bill, an appointed N.C. Industrial Hemp Commission would oversee a pilot program.

“I did run an industrial hemp bill several years ago and had opposition from the law enforcement community,”

said Sen. Stan Bingham, a Davidson County Republican who presented the bill in the Senate. He added that law enforcement no longer objects. from SRC: (The News & Observer)

Cannabis and hemp farmingINDUSTRIAL HEMP
The legislature voted to revive the ability of farmers to grow industrial-grade hemp, which has been banned for decades because of its connection to marijuana.

The North Carolina Senate gave final approval to allow the creation of a state Industrial Hemp Commission that could issue licenses for farmers to grow the crop and obtain federal waivers to establish a pilot program. Last year’s federal farm bill allowed industrial hemp to be grown for research purposes only.

Industrial hemp has myriad commercial uses and has a small fraction of the active ingredient that produces the high when smoked.

The bill now goes to Gov. Pat McCrory’s desk. from SRC: (WSOCtv.com)