Senators to hemp experts: Do we know what we’re doing?

By: Laura Cassels

Aside from myriad unknowns about farming hemp in Florida, there’s no clear path to develop manufacturing facilities here in the event that eager researchers and farmers figure out how to cultivate this new crop.

“I’ve watched other states make this mistake. If there’s no one there to buy it, if there’s no one there to process it, our growers will also fail,” said Florida’s hemp czar Holly Bell, with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. She was addressing the Florida Senate Agriculture Committee this week.

“You have to develop the processors, the manufacturers, the retail side at the same time you’re doing cultivation. Economic development, that’s the key.”

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