Ten U.S. states have legalized the recreational use of the cannabis plant but in some states like Oregon it has caused a massive over supply of dried flower and extracted oils by farmers within the state. Farmers became overly excited at the prospect of capitalizing on a legal cannabis market causing the price per pound of cannabis to drop so significantly to the point that farmers are asking themselves what to do with their inventory. This has caused a recent interest with the farming community to cultivate another more industrious variety of the cannabis sativa plant, hemp.
Industrial hemp can be grown to manufacture textiles, building materials, and nutritious protein packed food products but recently has been thrust into the national spotlight due to the now well know CBD (Cannabidiol) compound. Products containing CBD can be found for sale all over the internet, health food grocery stores, smoke shops, and dispensaries. Farmers in the state of Oregon are now turning to cultivating hemp because they can earn as much as $100,000 per acre from products high yielding CBD varieties of the plant.
Hemp cultivation licenses has increased from 12 in 2015, to over 300 active licenses in 2018. Oregon is now second, to only Colorado, for the title of the highest acreage of industrial hemp being grown throughout the United States. It should be noted that 50% of the hemp grown in states like Colorado, Oregon, and Kentucky is grown strictly to produce CBD oil.
Almost 40 U.S. states have passed some kind of legislation allowing the propagation of industrial hemp within its boarders which has grabbed the United States Congresses attention. In 2018, congress will vote on whether or not to pass The Industrial Hemp Farming Act which will define the hemp plant as legal to be grown as an agricultural crop by farmers across the country.