Montana law advances hemp seed as food for animals

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Montana has included hemp seed food ingredients and substances in the definition of commercial feed, opening up the market for producers of products for pets, specialty pets, and horses.

A measure authorizing hemp food ingredients as commercial animal feed was signed into law this week by the state’s governor, Greg Gianforte. Proponents said the measure is a major advancement in development of the U.S. hemp grain industry, gives farmers a wider berth to do business, and establishes Montana as a leader in advancing hemp for grain production.

Hemp seed could also be approved for other farm livestock pending approval from the state’s Center for Veterinary Medicine.

Raising Montana

“We look forward to building a nationally recognized hemp program founded on grain and fiber production, and working with those farmers and businesses who work hard to make things happen,” said Ken Elliott, founder at IND HEMP, a seed and fiber processing and supply company in Fort Benton, Montana which represented more than 30 family farms in advocating for the new law.

Hemp lobbying firm Agricultural Hemp Solutions, LLC also worked in support of the bill, which overwhelmingly passed the Montana Legislature. The Montana Farm Bureau, Montana Farmers Union, Montana Stockgrowers Association, and the Montana Grain Growers Association also favored the new law.

Montana House Agriculture Committee Chairman Josh Kassmier (center) celebrates passage of the hemp seed feed bill with Morgan and Ken Elliot of IND HEMP (right), and Brentlee and Jacynta Bomgardner, local Fort Benton 4-H teens who testified in support of feeding hemp to their animals.

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