Farmers in Arkansas completed harvesting the state’s first legal hemp crop, and the first batch of cannabidiol extract has been processed. Touting the potential of this new cash crop, Lejen Lotspeich, CSO of New Age Hemp commented, “You can drink as many O’Doul’s as you want to get a buzz, but all you’re going to get is a stomachache.” Then he continued, “You can smoke as much hemp as you want to try and get high, but all you’re going to get is a headache.”
To date, Arkansas state officials have issued 80 licenses for the cultivation of hemp. These numbers equate to nearly 1,900 acres in 42 counties across the state, as well as, 18 processor licenses to make the extracts.
MEANWHILE, ARIZONA HEMP CELEBRATES “OPENING DAY”
As of June 1st, licensed hemp producers in Arizona were able to kick off their first season of legal hemp cultivation and processing. Excited for the vast opportunities the crop presents to Arizona farmers, George Buckler, the Science Committee chair of the Arizona Hemp Industry Association stated, “I’m very excited that, here in Arizona, we have a huge variety of environments and can take a crop that’s been grown for thousands of years and apply all the latest technologies, using brand new organic methods. Soon we’ll be worldwide leaders in high-quality hemp production.”
Although medical marijuana has been legal since 2010 in Arizona, the explosion of popularity regarding CBD supplements and food additives does not appear to be slowing down. Additionally, as the industry continues to expand and grow, analysts expect hemp textiles and hemp building materials to experience a similar boom in the coming years.
RHODE ISLAND SEEKING BLOCKCHAIN EXPERTISE
In a press release this week, the state of Rhode Island is requesting proposals for developing a blockchain solution to improve the state’s operations and explicitly wanting to improve “visibility into the Medical Marijuana industry from seed to sale, reducing potential fraud and abuse.”
Liz Tanner, Director of Business Regulation, said she hopes this will, “encourage blockchain businesses to demonstrate their value to government entities, and I encourage blockchain-based businesses to consider Rhode Island to test blockchain technology within government.” Meanwhile, Chief Information Officer, Bijay Kumar said, “I am excited to see the possibilities and to learn more about how this new technology is helping other public and private entities reach new levels of innovation in business, security, and other areas.”