Hemp conference March 5

Central State University Extension and Ohio State University Extension are collaborating to present the 2021 Land Grant Virtual Hemp Conference: Looking Back to Plan for the Future. 

            The virtual conference will be held 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, March 5, and features a wide variety of speakers focusing on growing and marketing hemp. 

            Speakers will include: 

• Craig Schluttenhofer, Central State University, Updating Research on Growing Hemp 

• James Morris and Brad Bergefurd, Ohio State University Extension, Research in Growing CBD Hemp
• Chris Zoller and Lee Beers, Ohio State University Extension, Research in Growing Fiber Hemp 

• Tyler Mark, University of Kentucky, Economics of Growing Hemp
• Margurite Bolt, Purdue University, Pest Management in Hemp Crops
• Jim Belt, Ohio Department of Agriculture, Hemp Licensing in Ohio 

Two sessions will be held with Session 1 starting at 9 a.m., and ending at 11:30 a.m., and Session 2 starting at 1 p.m., and ending at 4 p.m.  

A virtual trade show will be held from 1 to 5 p.m., Saturday, March 6, and will feature hemp processors who will provide information to help potential growers discover possible markets.  Vendors will also include suppliers, such as irrigation companies. Registration is required for the virtual events.  

Hemp provides new opportunities to Ohio farmers as a grain, fiber and medicinal crop, said Central State University Extension Ag and Natural Resources Program Leader Cindy Folck. 

            Grain hemp produces seed for raw consumption, animal feed, oil and protein cake. Fiber hemp generates two products: bast fiber (the fibrous outer portion of the stem) and hurd, (the woody inner core) that serve as raw materials for numerous industrial applications. Hemp can also be used for specialized medicinal products, such as cannabidiol or CBD. 

            “Potential growers should evaluate whether the crop fits their needs prior to planting hemp,” she said. “Determining if hemp is suitable for a farm, as well as incorporating into new or existing practices, can be challenging. Hemp cannot be taken to the local farm cooperative to be sold like other Ohio commodities. Hemp processors must be licensed by the State of Ohio. Participants in the Virtual Hemp Conference will learn where and how they can market their crop, as well as to obtain a license to produce hemp on their farm.” 

            The term hemp, Folck adds, is used in conjunction with marijuana.  United State law, however, distinguishes between the two types of Cannabis sativa plants. As defined by state and federal legislation, hemp contains less than 0.3 percent of THC, which is the intoxicating compound found in Cannabis, on a dry weight basis. 

            To register or for more information about the hemp conference or trade show, email Folck at afolck@CentralState.edu or call 937.376.6101. 

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