Is Virginia about to legalize industrial hemp?

George Washington grew hemp. Thomas Jefferson grew hemp. The colonists at Jamestown grew hemp. In fact, “The United States is the largest consumer of hemp products in the world, but it is the only industrialized country that prohibits farmers from growing hemp,” says Nicholas Cote, a Virginian activist for freeing the hemp market in America.

While there hasn’t been huge progress at the federal level—though Rep. Thomas Massie’s (R-KY) Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2015 has picked up 52 sponsors this year—the Virginia state legislature last week passed bills in both houses which Cote predicts will successfully be signed into law in Virginia.

North Dakota and Kentucky have already eased restrictions on industrial hemp, which is banned at the federal level as part of the drug war despite the fact that it cannot be used as a drug.

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