On June 16, 2020, leading hemp farmers in the U.S, including our co-founder of Anavii Market Jason Amatucci, signed a letter to the President of the United States.
The letter was addressed to Donald Trump and his administration explaining how the recent passing of the 2018 Farm Bill can help reshape the U.S. economy after the global impact of Covid-19.
Even with the passing of the farm bill, the hemp industry still faces a multitude of economical uncertainties due to strict regulations created by the FDA that prevent cannabidiol (CBD) from being recognized as a legitimate botanical ingredient used in food and dietary supplement products.
U.S. hemp farmers have reached out requesting legislative support in having these regulatory burdens be removed to help stimulate the economy nationwide.
How Has Covid-19 Affected the U.S. Economy?
In recent months, unemployment in the U.S. has reached numbers similar to that of the Great Depression and the Great Recession of 2008.
Within the first five weeks of quarantine, 26 million people lost their jobs due to Covid-19 and by the end of May, more than 35 million Americans have filed for unemployment.
Even months after the U.S. became the epicenter of the virus, there are still many Americans who have not received unemployment checks or even their stimulus checks due to technical glitches within unemployment offices and the U.S. Department of Treasury.
Now that various states around the country are moving into the next phase of re-opening businesses, leaders in the hemp industry have come together to propose a promising idea that hemp production is and will be a pivotal step in reshaping the U.S. economy, thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill.
What is the 2018 Farm Bill?
The 2018 Farm Bill was passed in December of that year to reauthorize many expenditures from the previous farm bill, while also protecting and providing support to farmers throughout the country with new production benefits.
The bill establishes crop insurance, maintains disaster programs, and promotes voluntary conservation.
This is a huge victory for the hemp industry. Production that was originally outlawed in 1937, the 2018 Farm Bill re-establishes the full legalization of commercial hemp farming on a broader scale.
There are much less restrictions on the sale, transport, or possession of hemp-related products as long as those items are manufactured in accordance with the law.
Growing hemp as nature designed it is vital to our urgent need to reduce greenhouse gases and ensure the survival of our planet."-Jack Herer
Can the 2018 Farm Bill Help Stimulate the Economy?
The simple answer is yes.
As of January 2020, 47 states have hemp production programs and more than 17,000 farmers grew hemp during the 2019 season.
It’s true that hemp farmers have also been impacted by the virus and express in this letter a full commitment to playing a role in rebuilding the nation’s economy.
While the contribution of the hemp industry to the U.S. economy is yet to be seen, the numbers projected are impressive.
According to the Hemp Business Journal, there was $820 million in U.S. hemp sales in 2018 and are projected to reach $2.6 billion by 2022.
What is still uncertain is the overall impact hemp could have on the economy if strict FDA regulations were removed. It is our hope that this letter to the president will help legislature see hemp as a multi-faceted crop that is a great asset to our nation.
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