Research farm proposes growing hemp locally – Pennsylvania News

Research farm proposes growing hemp locally – Pennsylvania News

HARRISBURG – A project in Franklin County is among 16 industrial hemp research proposals recently approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.

Destiny’s Agro Farm Inc. is to compare at least four varieties of hemp plants for visual qualities, fiber content and seed yields. Details about the farm’s location or company ownership were not available.

The state Department of Agriculture is contacting the researchers to see how widely they want information about their projects distributed, according to department spokeswoman Bonnie J. McCann.

Industrial hemp is a promising and versatile crop with enormous market potential, according to state Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding.

Industrial hemp and marijuana are different varieties of the same plant species. Industrial hemp is cultivated for fiber, seed and other products. Marijuana is cultivated for a psychoactive plant chemical. Hemp plants and seeds have a minute amount of the active chemical contained in marijuana.

Redding said Pennsylvania has the chance to demonstrate the potential of industrial hemp through research projects allowed under the Industrial Hemp Research Pilot Program, launched in December after the enactment of Act 92 of 2016.

Industrial hemp, known for strong fiber and healthful seeds, is used in more than 25,000 products – health and beauty products, textiles, industrial oils, pharmaceuticals, plastics, biofuels, soaps, moisturizers, cooking, foods, beverages and biofuels.

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