President Trump Signs Historic 867 Billion 2018 Farm Bill
After 81 years of daunting political prohibition, Industrial Hemp is removed from the Schedule 1 Controlled Substance list blamed as one of the most illicit of drugs. Today, President Trump signs into law the Farm Bill of 2018, an $867 Billion dollar bipartisan policy that includes the Hemp Farming Act.
After a final vote by the House (368-47) on December 12, and a Senate landslide passage of 87-13 the previous day, the unprecedented Bill will now shift the agricultural responsibility of Industrial Hemp to the USDA for regulation. Industrial Hemp is categorized as a cannabis substance with less than a .3% THCa content with over 25, 000 uses and promises an economic infusion of up to $20 Billion or more by 2022.
The passing of the Farm Bill will allow farmers to capitalize on the $830 million dollar’s worth of hemp products currently being legally imported into the U.S. every year from foreign countries like Canada, China, India, and European. Up until now, it has been legal for other countries to sell hemp products to Americans but we have been needlessly prohibited from growing and manufacturing hemp goods ourselves. A very unfair and unbalanced trade practice allowed by over a dozen Presidential administrations robbing our farmers of billions of revenue each year.
Hemp farmers finally enjoy water rights previously withheld by the Bureau of Reclamation and other state water regulators. As a non-drug commodity under the USDA, it will provide hemp commerce across state lines while allowing hemp growers to buy federally-subsidized crop insurance. Access to business banking and open internet marketing/advertising is another privilege that has been denied until now for hemp farmers, manufacturers and hemp retailers.
Many key figures will be credited for the bipartisan efforts of this Farm Bill and the inclusion of the Hemp Farming Act of 2018 but no one has fought as hard for the legalization of Industrial Hemp as Eric Steenstra, president of Vote Hemp, a grassroots organization spearheaded by Steenstra. Vote Hemp has been headquartered in Washington D.C. since 2000, with Steenstra dedicating over 30 years of cannabis and hemp lobbying experience with the Hemp Industries Association. He has been a driving force and determined hemp industry activist. He will forever be remembered as the Father of hemp legalization. A special thanks go out to Eric Steenstra and his hard-working staff for their part in making history for the farmers and citizens on this great country.
HempTek.org has been a proud fellow supporter of the industrial hemp movement lobbying alongside Vote Hemp in Washington. We will continue to champion the rights and legalization of medical cannabis in the upcoming year and those to come.
Although today’s signing makes the Farm Bill of 2018 law, it will not go into effect until January 1, 2019.