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Midwest Hemp Council Statement on the Importance of HB 1224:

"We are extremely disappointed with the recent ruling on Indiana’s current craft hemp flower laws from the Court. Despite the setback, we remain optimistic that the Indiana General Assembly will find an appropriate legislative solution to re-open the projected $300M-$400 craft hemp flower market for farmers, small business owners and consumers across Indiana.
 
"Modernizing Indiana’s hemp laws is critical to the development and growth of the whole hemp plant economy. Such an act will directly lead to significant investments in and job creation across rural and urban Indiana—without state or federal monetary assistance. Under current Indiana law, craft hemp flower is permitted to travel “in continuous transit” through the state — so long as an Indiana farmer didn’t grow it, an Indiana small business didn’t sell it and an Indiana consumer didn’t possess it.

"HB 1224 modernizes Indiana’s hemp laws by leveraging what has elevated Indiana to a national leader on hemp policy—the appropriate labeling and testing requirements for low THC hemp extract products. Couple this demonstrably successful solution replicated across the country with the availability of several types of road side test kits for law enforcement, HB 1224 is a major win for the whole hemp plant economy.
 
"HB 1224 has been assigned to the Senate Committee on Commerce and Technology. This is a great sign as this committee has been supportive of hemp production in Indiana in the past."
 
What’s next? 
  • Indiana members: Be on the lookout for communications from us on the best time to engage the committee in asking for their support of HB 1224. 
  • Members: Be on the lookout for a halftime report on all cannabis legislation at the Indiana Statehouse.

 


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HB 1224 Moves to Third Reading

Last week, we told you that the House Committee on Commerce, Small Business and Economic Development passed HB 1224 with a final vote of 9-4. While this was the first step in ensuring Indiana’s farmers and small business owners have access to the whole hemp plant economy, our work continues. We developed the flow chart below to help our members follow HB 1224 through the twists and turns of the legislative process.

What does HB 1224 accomplish? It responsibly re-legalizes the projected $300M-$400M craft hemp flower market in Indiana for farmers, small business owners and other entrepreneurs. The current criminalization of federally legal craft hemp flower has done nothing to curb demand for the product. Instead, it has only shifted demand away from Indiana farmers and small businesses to out of state farmers and online retailers. Consumers simply have the product shipped directly to them through the United States Postal Office.
 
What happens next? HB 1224 has been added to the Third Reading Calendar, where all 100 representatives will vote “yes” or “no” on the bill. If the bill receives a simple majority of “yes” votes, the bill will then move to the Senate Chamber to restart the process.
 
How can you help if you live in Indiana? YOUR VOICE MATTERS! Indiana Representatives must hear from all farmers, handlers, small businesses owners, consumers and other entrepreneurs in Indiana on this issue. They cannot hear from you enough, so don’t be shy. It is imperative that you make the direct ask that your representative votes yes on HB 1224. We also ask that you reach out to Governor Holcomb and ask that he supports the whole hemp plant economy in Indiana. Need help finding your representative? Click here to find your legislators. 
 
Keep your eyes peeled for more updates from MHC on HB 1224 as it moves through the process. We are the only trusted source for timely and accurate information on the whole hemp plant economy in Indiana.

Update on HB 1224: Craft Hemp Flower and Hemp Production

On Tuesday, February 9, the House Committee on Commerce, Small Business and Economic Development passed HB 1224 with a final vote of 9-4. While this is the first step in ensuring Indiana’s farmers and small business owners have access to the whole hemp plant economy, our work has just begun. We developed this flow chart to help our members follow HB 1224 through the twists and turns of the legislative process.
 
What does HB 1224 accomplish? It responsibly re-legalizes the projected $300M-$400M craft hemp flower market in Indiana for farmers, small business owners and other entrepreneurs. The current criminalization of federally legal craft hemp flower has done nothing to curb demand for the product. Instead, it has only shifted demand away from Indiana farmers and small businesses to out of state farmers and online retailers. Consumers simply have the product shipped directly to them through the United States Postal Office.
 
What happens next? HB 1224 will be added to the Second Reading Calendar next week, where any Representative can offer amendments to the bill. These amendments need a simple majority vote to be added to the bill. Once the amendments are accepted or rejected, HB 1224 will move to the Third Reading Calendar, where all 100 Representatives will vote “yes” or “no” on the underlying bill. If the bill receives a simple majority of “yes” votes, the bill will then move to the Senate Chamber to restart the process.
 
How can you help if you live in Indiana? YOUR VOICE MATTERS! Indiana Representatives must hear from all farmers, handlers, small businesses owners, consumers and other entrepreneurs in Indiana on this issue. They cannot hear from you enough so don’t be shy. It is imperative that you make the direct ask that Representatives support HB 1224. We also ask that you reach out to Governor Holcomb and ask that he supports the whole hemp plant economy in Indiana. Need help finding your representative? Click here to find your legislators. We also encourage you to contact Governor Holcomb and ask that he support HB1224.
 
Keep your eyes peeled for more updates from MHC on HB 1224 as it moves through the process. We are the only trusted source for timely and accurate information on the whole hemp plant economy in Indiana.

Member Alert: The Hoosier Craft Hemp Flower Market Needs Your Help!

The House Committee on Commerce, Small Business and Economic Development took testimony on HB 1224 on January 25, 2021. The bill will be scheduled for a final committee vote early next week and we need your help.

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Indiana Growers: Background Check Options

A federal background check MUST be submitted for all applicants and key participants identified within an organization. By law, a state background check is not sufficient. All growers or handlers must pass an FBI background check to be licensed to grow or handle, process, transport or test hemp. This background check must be completed within 60 days of your application per USDA rules. 

The Office of the Indiana State Chemist has confirmed with the USDA that IdentiGo locations are able to do the digital FBI background checks that meet the requirements for obtaining an Indiana hemp license. These locations offer FBI criminal history summary checks, and even though it says it cannot be used for licensing, the USDA is accepting summaries. There are IdentiGo sites in Michigan and Illinois with available appointments. This option should be reserved for those who need their background check processed more quickly - like indoor growers, handlers, etc.

For those of you who do not have time constraints, online FBI background check information can be found below. OISC still strongly encourages the electronic submittal of your fingerprints, even though that means driving to Indianapolis, Chicago, Louisville, Ann Arbor or Covington, KY, to get digital fingerprints done. The FBI is estimating five days for processing of electronic fingerprints and eight weeks on mailed paper fingerprints. To obtain a federal background check and learn about digital fingerprints, visit these websites:

USDA Issues Final Hemp Rule

USDA has issued its final hemp rule! While we are still reviewing the 301 page document, there are changes that reflect the industry’s comments, including:
  • extending the harvesting window to 30 days
  • improving sampling requirements
  • allowing remediation
  • raising the negligence threshold from .5% THC to 1% THC.
Thank you to all who submitted comments - great work! This final rule supersedes the interim final rule and is effective within the next 60 days or so. We will provide an in-depth analysis in the coming days.

From OISC: Untrustworthy hemp seed suppliers pose risk to farmers

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Office of Indiana State Chemist (OISC) is warning the public about predatory hemp seed vendors known to be currently active in the state.

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Midwest Hemp Council’s Hemp at the Crossroads Postponed Until December 2021

Midwest Hemp Council’s 2021 Hemp at the Crossroads conference, originally scheduled for February 4-5, 2021, has been postponed until December 1-3, 2021.

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Heartland Hemp Coop Launches Member-Owned Cooperative

Heartland Hemp Coop today announces the launch of its member-owned cooperative, focused on building a seed-to-shelf supply chain for hemp farmers in the Midwest. The coop will focus on the production and processing of hemp for fiber. 

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Job Opening: Sales at Green Sense Farms

Green Sense Farms is seeking an enthusiastic, tech-savvy sales person to join our hemp propagation team! Responsibilities will include generating new leads, qualifying suspects and developing hot prospects into sales. This will include, internet searches (LinkedIn, Facebook, State Hemp Associations, Farmer Co-Ops) networking, and maintaining contracts, customer files, and manage customer database for tracking communication.

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Midwest Hemp Council Leadership Joins Hemp Feed Coalition

After establishing the Midwest Hemp Council Animal Feed Committee and forming a partnership with the Hemp Feed Coalition, exciting progress is being made in unifying the HFC’s vision with MHC membership.

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From KCA Labs: Understanding a COA

As a complement to today's podcast episode, featuring Commercial Director Ryan Bellone, KCA labs created this handy guide to reading and understanding a certificate of analysis.

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Anticipating growth in outdoor hemp farming, U.S. developer releases new seed

U.S. seed developer New West Genetics (NWG) has released ABOUND, a line of dioecious hemp seeds for row crop farming, suggesting that conventional outdoor growing offers a path to scalability, dual-cropping of CBD and grain, and a stable supply chain.

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The U.S. SBA's Office of Advocacy Urges AMS To Extend The Reopened Public Comment Period For Interim Final Rule On Domestic Hemp Production

Last week, The Office of Advocacy (Advocacy) of the U.S. Small Business Administration submitted a comment letter in response to the reopening of the public comment period for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) interim final rule. They urged AMS to extend the public comment period for a minimum of 30 additional days to allow for small businesses and their representatives to fully and meaningfully participate in this important rulemaking.

To read their letter, click here.

Member News: Agrozen Labs Launches Indiana Hemp Testing Program

Agrozen Labs, an MHC member and the first non-governmental lab in Indiana to offer certified hemp testing, is offering a 10% discount to Midwest Hemp Council members! Their goal is to help farmers and formulators stay compliant with state and federal rules and regulations – so they work closely with the Office of the Indiana State Chemist and the University of Kentucky to ensure reliable and consistent results.

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Comment Now: DEA Interim Final Rule

The DEA Interim Final Rule - Why it Threatens Farmers, Small Businesses and the Entire CBD Industry

 
Make Comments Today!

Hemp group in U.S. state of Kentucky says it will go independent

Stakeholders in the U.S. state of Kentucky say they will launch a re-branded, independent hemp organization after a falling out with the national Hemp Industries Association (HIA).

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New York says USDA rules too strict, halts plans for hemp program

The state of New York will not submit a state hemp plan to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), saying the federal program‘s requirements are too strict on growers. The announcement effectively puts on hold the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets’ hemp program.

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Smokable hemp banned after local grower lobbies for legalization

“It’s an interesting situation trying to figure out how to navigate. Having a revenue stream shut down as a small business is very detrimental for investing in our business and home state here. We’re trying to scale our business, and having restrictions like this are detrimental to us trying to build jobs and providing economic impact. It has a heavy impact on businesses like us.”

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Update on Smokable Hemp in Indiana

On August 6, 2020, the Seventh Circuit denied the Petition for Rehearing regarding the pending smokable hemp litigation in Indiana. The practical impact of this denial means that Indiana will be free to prosecute farmers, small businesses and other entrepreneurs that grow and/or sell smokable hemp beginning on August 13, 2020.

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