New York goes all in for industrial hemp

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When it comes to hemp, the U.S. state of New York it putting its money where its mouth is. Having recently earmarked $650,000 for a hemp processing plant near Binghamton in the south central part of the state, the government also set aside $2 million in this year’s budget for a state-run hemp seed certification program. Last summer saw the establishment of a $5 million industrial hemp processing grant program for qualified projects related to hemp production.

“By expanding industrial hemp research, we are opening the doors to innovative ideas that could provide a major boost to our farms and communities, creating new jobs, and laying the foundation for future economic growth,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said.

New York more than tripled the number of farmers growing hemp last year to about 20; they planted 2,000 acres of the crop statewide.

The processing plant to be located in the Binghamton area, is at an estimated total cost of $3.2 million.

New York’s pilot industrial hemp program started in 2015, and this year lifted a cap on the number of participants. State officials say they will hold an Industrial Hemp Research Forum next month.

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