Governor touts bill to make hemp production easier in New Mexico

Politics - Government

The governor tweeted out Wednesday night saying she’s supporting a bill that would expand the commercial and industrial use of hemp. 

The bill’s sponsor says it’s going to bring an economic boom to the state.

Lawmakers are looking at different ways to grow New Mexico’s economy. The governor and a Democratic representative think hemp is the way to go. 

“What this does is provide uniformity in our farmers…ability to send their product to manufacturers to help manufacture hemp products and their byproducts,” Rep. Derrick Lente, D-Sandia Pueblo, said. 

Rep. Derrick Lente says those products and byproducts include things like CBD oils, textiles, cosmetic products, food, and construction materials, just to name a few. 

This bill is to make sure New Mexico is in compliance with the federal farm bill, which allows research and industrializes hemp. 

Rep. Lente says the hemp bill makes it easier to get a growing license and to be a manufacturer. 

“New Mexico is a prime spot to be growing hemp, but it allows, again, our folks in agriculture in rural New Mexico, tribes, everybody to take part in this really growing and booming economy that is now national and worldwide,” Sen. Lente said.

Hemp is different from marijuana. Hemp cannot be smoked and you cannot get high from it. Hemp can be made into CBD oils and creams that can help with relieving pain. 

Rep. Lente says there are about 2,000 acres of farmland already growing hemp and those farmers hope to produce about $40 million of hemp this year. 

This isn’t the only hemp-related bill this session. Other bills call for more hemp research. If farmers want to grow hemp, they would pay the state about $800 a year to grow it outside and an additional fee for each acre.

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