Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Hemp Is Legal, Will Local Leaders Keep Us From The Economic Benefits?

From Marketwired.com:

"November 02, 2015 10:53 ET

It's Final -- Hemp Legalized in North Carolina

LAS VEGAS, NV--(Marketwired - Nov 2, 2015) - Now LEGALIZED, North Carolina will be home to the only industrial hemp commercial decortication facility in the United States. On October 31, 2015 Governor Pat McCrory passed Senate Bill 313 (by not vetoing it) as "an act to recognize the importance and legitimacy of Industrial Hemp research, to provide for compliance with portions of the Federal Agricultural Act of 2014, and to promote increased agricultural employment."

Farmers in North Carolina now have the option to cultivate hemp crops with easy access to Hemp, Inc.'s (OTC PINK: HEMP) multipurpose industrial hemp commercial processing facility in Spring Hope, NC.

According to the article, Legalization is a Game Changer for Hemp, Inc., in Microcap Daily posted yesterday by Paul Knag, "Hemp, Inc. (OTC PINK: HEMP) is making a spectacular move up transforming into one of the top traded stocks on the entire bb's after a bill that would make Industrial hemp legal in North Carolina was not vetoed by Governor Pat McCrory, meaning it will now be passed into law." Click here to see full article.

The North Carolina General Assembly "finds and declares that it is in the best interest of the citizens of North Carolina to promote and encourage the development of an industrial hemp industry in the State in order to expand employment, promote economic activity, and provide opportunities to small farmers for an environmentally sustainable and profitable use of crop lands that might otherwise be lost to agricultural production. The purposes of this Article are to establish an agricultural pilot program for the cultivation of industrial hemp in the State, to provide for reporting on the program by growers and processors for agricultural or other research, and to pursue any federal permits or waivers necessary to allow industrial hemp to be grown in the State." To read the full bill, click here."

But Greensboro and Guilford County aren't agricultural areas anymore-- how can we benefit from hemp? 

Allow me to tell you a little story. In my late 20s I was a driver training instructor for MTA Truck Driver Training School located on Bolder Road in Greensboro. Each month we started new classes of 200 students with 100 or so of those students coming in from out of state to live in Greensboro motel rooms and eat 3 meals a day in Greensboro restaurants for the next 30 days. The school operated 364 days a year.

Do you have any idea what happened to Greensboro's hotel-motel occupancy rate when MTA truck school closed its Greensboro school? It hasn't averaged over 50% since.

So what does that have to do with hemp?

Well it just so happens I'm the project coordinator for an effort known as Bessemer Aquaponics, an effort to build the first accredited Aquaponic School in the United States on 20 or so acres of land located in East Greensboro.

We are working in conjunction with NC State University, NC A&T University and the Guilford County Agricultural Service to bring a 12 week Aquaponics program to a new campus located at the intersections of Bessemer Avenue, East Market Street and Burlington Road.

Sadly though, some people in high places think they know of better uses for that property. Since beginning the project we've fought off efforts to sell the property to connected developers with intentions of building a shopping center and grocery store in the next 10-20 years.

Others can't understand the industry such a facility would attract. Having the first such school of its kind would bring the manufacturers of Aquaponics equipment to Guilford County. And so too the machine shops, plumbing manufacturers, electronics manufacturers and others who need to be near the cutting edge of this emerging industry in order to be competitive.

But what does that have to do with hemp?

Well it just so happens there's another form of agriculture very closely related to Aquaponics called Hydroponics that was pretty much perfected by the growers of Hemp's very close cousin, Marijuana. So much of the technology between Aquaponics and Hydroponics crosses over that a lot of growers who do one do both with the biggest advantage to Aquaponics being that it is cheaper to produce crops via Aquaponics than by Hydroponics. And if you can grow Marijuana via Aquaponics then you can most assuredly grow Hemp by using Aquaponics.

So again I ask,  hemp is legal, will local leaders keep us from the economic benefits? Or will they make sure that land is kept for East Greensboro?

The next meeting of Bessemer Aquaponics is November 10. Click here to learn more. And please share this post with anyone who cares about Greensboro.