War on Drugs

California Legalizes Industrial Hemp Farming

If the feds allow it, which is a pretty big "if"


Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday signed legislation that allows California farmers to be prepared to grow industrial hemp upon federal approval. Senate Bill 566, authored by Senator Mark Leno, would permit growers in the Golden State to cultivate industrial hemp for the sale of seed, oil and fiber to manufacturers and businesses that currently rely on international imports for raw hemp products.

The bill, which is co-authored by Assembly member Allan Monsoor, R-Costa Mesa, would allow cultivation once the recent announcements from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder allowing states to regulate cannabis are clarified to include hemp.

"With the signing of this bill, California is poised to grow industrial hemp when the federal government gives states the green light," said Senator Leno, D-San Francisco. "In the past year, the conversation to legalize the cultivation of hemp has gained momentum at the federal level, and it is only a matter of time before a farmer's right to grow hemp is restored. Hemp, which is already found in hundreds of consumer products manufactured in our state, is a perfect crop for California. It has great potential to revitalize family farms, create new jobs and stimulate the economy."