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Waco, TX goes wild for industrial hemp at recent conference

Billy Hathorn for Wikimedia Commons

Industrial hemp enthusiasts funneled to Waco, Texas for an event this week where the government heard their input on state policy toward the crop.

The meeting at the Texas Farm Bureau happened Wednesday and would be the first major move to solidify state hemp policy after the legislature legalized hemp last year.

According to the Bryan, Texas Eagle, a wide swath of folks was present for the event, people of all walks of life interested in hemp cultivation and policy and happy the government was taking constructive comments. [1]

“We’re excited about getting the hemp business started in Texas. This is like the end of Prohibition,” Texas Agricultural Commissioner Sid Miller said, according to the Eagle. [1]

Reporting from local ABC affiliate, 3 KIITV, shows that over 200 farmers and interested citizens were present for Wednesday’s hearings. [2]

“Farmers, if done right, and done well, they can potentially net ten to twenty thousand an acre. You compare that with other crops like corn where they net four hundred to five hundred an acre, there's no competition,” President of Texas Hemp Growers Zack Maxwell told 3 KIITV. [2]

The moves in Texas aren’t isolated. Since industrial hemp was legalized in 2018, state and municipal governments have taken up their own initiatives to determine how their hemp production would be regulated and helped along.

One of the major uses for industrial hemp is in CBD oil extraction. People love to use CBD for their chronic pain, anxiety, insomnia and other problems.

CBD is non-intoxicating, unlike its relative cannabis byproduct marijuana. One issue many current and potential hemp growers are worried about is whether their industrial hemp will test too high in THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.

According to the Eagle, THC levels over 0.3% within an industrial hemp crop can result in serious repercussions and this “hot” hemp was a major discussion point for the visitors to the Wednesday hearing. [1]

Waco’s proceedings are also joined within the state by the Austin city council, which recently held a press conference on the status of marijuana decriminalization within city limits. [3]

According to Austin ABC affiliate KVUE, five city council members currently endorse decriminalizing low-level marijuana possession charges. [3]


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