Growing Hemp in Texas
A nascent bill allowing the legal cultivation of hemp has recently received widespread approval in the Texas House. Even though marijuana would still be illegal in the state, hemp and hemp extracts whose THC levels are below 0.3% will also be legal if the bill is passed into law. A variety of products that contain hemp are legal in Texas, even though farmers will have to wait a little longer before cultivation becomes legal. This has brought about a situation where local businesses have been forced to import these products from other states. This is expected to change if the proposed bill is passed into law.
Once the bill becomes law, the Texas Department of Agriculture will handle the task of licensing hemp farmers. However, before any license can be issued, the state agency will have to develop the necessary rules and regulations those farmers must follow. These guidelines will also cover the requirements of the licensing process. The US Department of Agriculture will need to approve the draft regulations before they can be officially adopted by the state agency. The state of Texas is looking to borrow heavily from the established guidelines already in use by state agencies in states where the cultivation of hemp has already been legalized.
The move towards legalization of the cultivation of hemp in the state is said to be great news for ranchers and farmers in Texas as it gives them the opportunity to diversify further. Hemp is a sturdy plant that is known to do well even in the most demanding climates. As a drought resistant plant, it is expected to be cultivable in the state which is popularly known for its hot and dry climate. Of additional research will shed more light on the best hemp cultivars suited to the local soil and weather conditions.