By Jay, Willie Nelson Peace Research Institute Staff Writer
Art Bell and Willie Nelson talk about hemp cannabis marijuana in this clip no longer available on the original Coast to Coast site. In this clip from Friday May 9th, 1997, country music legend Willie Nelson chats with Art Bell about the state of hemp criminalization. You may find it surprising how little has changed in the last dozen years.
While several states now allow medical marijuana and thousands of people have been able to emerge from under the dark cloud of criminalization, millions more still fear for their freedom because they enjoy the benefits of this herb superb. The country as a whole still suffers under the unnecessary burdens of the expensive and ineffectual War On Drugs while being denied the financial benefits of this valuable commercial crop.
By Paul Armentano, NORML
Texas Republican Ron Paul and a coalition of 25 co-sponsors are once again seeking to allow for the commercial farming of industrial hemp.
House Bill 1831, The Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2011, would exclude low potency varieties of marijuana from federal prohibition. If approved, this measure will grant state legislatures the authority to license and regulate the commercial production of hemp as an industrial and agricultural commodity.
Several states — including North Dakota, Montana, and Vermont– have enacted regulations to allow for the cultivation of hemp under state law. However, none of these laws can be implemented without federal approval. Passage of HR 1831 would remove existing federal barriers and allow states that wish to regulate commercial hemp production the authority to do so.
By Gabrielle Giroday, Winnepeg Free Press
Bet you never thought a bus part might be made with hemp, canola and flax.
But Helena Marak, Manitoba Rural Adaptation Council program coordinator, sees possibilities for the products you might be more used to encountering on the shelves of your local health-food store.
Marak stood Saturday morning with a brown University of Manitoba prototype at the Agriculture in the City event at The Forks.
"People have really found this interesting. They marvel at the strength of it. It's really, really strong, it's durable and, of course, it's made with natural fibres that are grown right here in Manitoba, so that's a big bonus," said Marak.
She said hemp fibres left over from making food products can be used for other purposes, like products for the transportation or aerospace industry such as car door panels.
The three-day event is dedicated to educating the public about farmers, agriculture science and research, and uses for Manitoba crops beyond the table.
Event organizer Reg Sims said it started in 2003 and is expected to draw thousands of people.
"At one time, everybody in the city had an uncle or a grandparent that lived on a farm. They'd go to the farm, they knew their milk came from cows, their hamburgers came from cows," said Sims. He said he believes farmers are "the greatest stewards of our land."
"Agriculture is a lot more than food," he said.
Written by Colby Dunn, Smoky Mountain News
If someone said the word "hemp," the first thing to spring to mind probably wouldn't be home construction. But if you're looking for a strong, green, energy-efficient building material that's resistant to pretty much everything, hemp might be your best choice.
This is the concept being pitched by Greg Flavall and David Madera, owners of an Asheville-based business called Hemp Technologies. They're some of the first to build with the material in the United States, where industrial hemp hasn't seen the rise in popularity it enjoys in other countries, thanks to a federal ban on U.S. production.
Its recognition is slowly ramping up, though, due in part to its benefits over standard concrete. The third house in the country to be built with the technology is going up now, in the mountains above Lake Junaluska.
Roger Teuscher, the homeowner, said he was turned on to the idea by his first architect, who suggested the plant as a cleaner, greener alternative to standard homebuilding supplies. Tuescher, who lives most of the year in Florida, said he was drawn not only to the cost savings gained by increased insulation, but by the product’s recyclability.
Over the past several years, sixteen states have passed pro-hemp farming legislation, so why are Illinois lawmakers working against the farmer?
By Michael, Hemp News Correspondent
Last month, because of years of festering propagandist lies, the Illinois House of Representatives voted against mid-west farmers and their right to grow a viable rotation crop (HB1383 - Illinois Industrial Hemp Act). The bill, which passed a House Agriculture and Conservation Committee by a vote of 11-2 earlier in the same week, would have licensed: individuals desiring to grow, process, cultivate, harvest, possess, sell, or purchase industrial hemp or industrial hemp related products. In many cases, an alternative rotation crop, such as hemp, could possibly save the multi-generational farms from foreclosure.
"The fiber from industrial hemp is one of the strongest natural fibers known, and it is present in bundles that surround the main stem. Industrial hemp fiber applications include uses in textiles, cordage, construction materials, paper products, and bio-composite plastics," according to Donald P. Briskin, Professor of Plant Biochemistry/Physiology, Department of Natural and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois.
By Government of Alberta, Agriculture and Rural Development
Industrial hemp (Cannabis sativa) is one of the oldest cultivated plants in the world. The species was banned in North America in late 1930s because its leaves and flowers contained a hallucinogenic drug known as delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). It was banned internationally in 1961 under the United Nations’ Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. Hemp does suffer from the “snicker factor”, largely because of its hippy-dippy image and close association with marijuana, its conscious-altering cousin.
By Paul Benhaim, Hemp News Correspondent/Hemp Building Consultant
As there are so many applications for hemp and hemp products, so it is not a surprise to find that it can be used to build a house; but the question we need to answer is, is it worthwhile?
Let's look at the facts and see why the answer to this question is undeniably YES!
To begin with, hemp buildings are not a new concept - but the technology necessary is very new and constantly evolving. Although there is a 300 year old hemp-built house in Japan! Hemp building technology was originated in France where most hemp building products come from.
There are several different combination's of building materials used in hemp building:
• Hemp + Lime, Cement and minor wetting agents.
• Hemp + Lime only
• Hemp + Gypsum based binder
The Gypsum composite is the basis for hemp bricks, for building, generally the first method is the most used. The composite should be chosen to suit the climate and specific requirements of the building. Hemp houses exist from the snow of Canada down to the Australian tropics and just about everywhere along the way!
David Piller, Hemp News Correspondent
A friend of mine recently put together a survey for a ethnography research methods class on the topic of creating effective hemp education and promoting hemp awareness. Below are a few of my responses.
What is your educational platform (or pro-hemp argument) that you use when doing hemp outreach?
My main "argument" is that if we are truly serious about maximizing the growth of the green economy and creating a sustainable future, industrial hemp must become, once again, one of the United States' primary crops. I stress how cultivating hemp will do more to help clean our air, soil, and water than any patented technology our scientists can offer. I include hemp nutritional benefits and communicate how making more hemp foods available to our citizens, we can improve the quality of life of many and reduce our long term health care costs.
Do you change this platform for various audiences: when and why?
Yes and no.
I think it is important to make things as simple as possible for people to grasp hemp’s true potential, and I always strive to bring it down to a healthy environment, healthy food, and healthy industries to lay a solid foundation to build a dialogue upon.
Oregon Hemp History, Connecting the Past to the Future
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Correspondent
In the early 1990's, C & S Specialty Builder's Supply (namely Bill Conde, Dave Seber, Barry Davis, and Tim Pate) in Harrisburg, Oregon, imported regulated bales of hemp and began working on a medium density fiberboard (MDF). The evolution of hemp MDF as a viable building supply option began when Bill Conde of C & S took their hemp fiber research and ideas to Paul Maulberg, the head of Washington State University's Wood Engineering Laboratory.
Conde explains in a 2005 Mycotopia blog, "We asked if [Maulberg] would consider trying some hemp fiber to make some experimental hemp MDF, and his reply was, 'You bet, hemp is the King Cong of fiber. I would love a chance to work with some."
Excitedly, Conde and team began the process working with Maulberg on creation and testing of the hemp MDF. It was soon discovered how strong the hemp fiber truly was, as the full-length hemp fibers jammed both of the processing machines and brought things to a standstill. The process for breaking down the fibers was redesigned and restarted with ultimate success.
Press Release: News Conference
When: Monday, March 28th, 10 AM
Where: 2712 NE Sandy Blvd. Portland, OR 97232
Who: Paul Stanford, Chief Petitioner & Treasurer
Jennifer Alexander, Campaign Manager
By Susan Gager, KEZI
EUGENE, Ore. -- Just months ago, a marijuana dispensary measure failed on the ballot in Oregon. Now the push is on to legalize the drug across the board.
The creator of the new initiative wants marijuana to be taxed just like cigarettes and liquor. He and its supporters say it would generate millions for the state. But does it have any chance of passing? That depends on who you ask.
"I think that it's time for the nation to take the demonization out of marijuana," said Phillip Allen, family nurse practitioner.
That's what the director of the Hemp and Cannabis Foundation intends to do with a new initiative to get marijuana legalized in the state.
"It really does relieve a lot of pain and it can really help a lot of people," said Eliza Williams, student.
The executive director of the Hemp and Cannabis Foundation says if it were taxed like cigarettes and liquor, it could generate millions of dollars in revenue for the state's general fund.
"Alcohol revenue brings in about $75 million. It will create lots of new jobs, and create all these new industries. We think it'll create billions and billions of dollars in the long run," said Paul Stanford, Hemp & Cannabis Foundation Executive Director.
By Steve Elliott, Toke of the Town/Special to Hemp News
If Paul Stanford has his way, cannabis will become legal in Oregon next year. The executive director of The Hemp and Cannabis Foundation (THCF) is working to get a measure on the ballot in 2012 to legalize marijuana in the Beaver State.
Pot should be taxed like cigarettes and alcohol to generate millions of dollars in tax revenue for the state, according to Stanford, who said cannabis would be regulated and sold to people over the age of 21, reports Joe Raineri at KATU.
"We want to regulate it so that businesses like bars and taverns that bar the admission of minors can offer that as a business," Stanford said.
According to Stanford, legal marijuana would bring a steady flow of cash for Oregon.
"Alcohol revenues bring in about $75 million," he said. "It will create lots of new jobs. It will create all these new industries. We think it will be billions and billions of dollars in the long run."
About 90 percent of the revenue brought in by legal marijuana would go to the state's general fund.
In order to get the measure on the ballot, Stanford needs to get nearly 90,000 signatures.
More people are choosing this balanced food source despite legal potshots
By Alexia Elejalde-Ruiz, Chicago Tribune
Hemp, its advocates say, is nature's perfect food source.
It has omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids, contains 33 percent protein, is a good source of vitamin E and is low in saturated fat. It's an environmentally friendly crop that grows fast and requires few pesticides.
We can't farm it
Hemp is also a controversial food source because of its relationship with its naughty cousin, marijuana. Hemp seeds can contain trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive chemical in marijuana.
While it is legal to import, sell, purchase and consume industrial hemp in the U.S., it is illegal to grow it without a permit from the Drug Enforcement Administration, and it is virtually impossible to get such a permit. The policy stems from the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, when all varieties of cannabis were put into the category of schedule 1 drugs, alongside the likes of heroin.
The DEA tried to ban hemp food consumption in 2001, citing THC concerns. The ban was struck down in court.
But we can use it
By By Jacqueline Street, ABC News
Australians may have consumed a lot of food over the Christmas weekend but it is unlikely many thought about eating hemp.
Products like hemp chocolate and hemp ice cream are available in other countries but are banned in Australia.
Now a group of Tasmanian farmers is renewing a push to overturn the ban.
They say industrial hemp will not make you high and has many health benefits.
Phil Reader, who has been growing industrial hemp in northern Tasmania for five years, says the plant's similarity to cannabis ends at the leaves.
"There's absolutely no drug in it; it's below 0.35 per cent THC, so it cannot be confused with marijuana," he said.
Mr Reader says Tasmania has the ideal climate for growing hemp seeds, but his crop is tightly controlled because under state law hemp is classified as a poison.
"The reason it hasn't taken off is the legislation. In Tasmania we come under the Poisons Act," he said.
"It's not a poison; there's no reason for that to be called a poison."
Mr Reader says industrial hemp is not regarded as a drug crop anywhere else in the world.
"It's only in Tasmania that we have this problem and that means a whole host of issues with regards to licensing, administration and where we can sell the crop," he said.
Hobart hemp producer Brandt Teale says he is frustrated because he believes hemp could be a profitable food product in Tasmania and other states.
"There is absolutely nothing wrong with the responsible use of marijuana by adults and it should be of no interest or concern to the government. They have no business knowing whether we smoke or why we smoke." Keith Stroup, NORMLCON 2010
Compiled by Hemp News
1. Global: U.S.-Mexico Drug Summit Fails to Acknowledge Obvious Solution to Violent Drug Cartels
Ending Marijuana Prohibition Would Deal Crucial Blow to Mexican Drug Cartels, Drastically Reduce Border Violence.
(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - Today, high-ranking officials from the United States and Mexico concluded a three-day conference meant to outline ways the two nations could reduce the illicit drug trade-associated violence that continues to plague the U.S.-Mexican border.