Matteo Paganelli

Ohio Ag Department Plants Hemp Crop

The Ohio Agriculture Department has planted a pilot hemp crop so officials can practice hemp cultivation and lab testing procedures in preparation for the state’s hemp market launch expected next year.

Full story after the jump.

The Ohio Department of Agriculture has planted two rows of hemp crops on its Reynoldsburg campus just two days after Gov. Mike DeWine (R) signed the bill legalizing the crop and CBD, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. The agency bought 100 seedlings from a mother hemp plant in Kentucky and will grow some outdoors and some in a greenhouse.

“It’s an historic day for the state of Ohio. There’s a real art in growing it and we want Ohio farmers to be successful.” — Agriculture Director Dorothy Pelanda, to the Enquirer

The department planted four hemp varieties used for CBD extraction from Acaela Biomedical. They paid $250 for the crop.

According to the report, officials plan to use the plants as practice for when they have to test crops grown by the state’s farmers. Cultivators are also invited to visit the field to learn about the growing and harvesting process.

Farmers are expected to begin planting hemp crops in Ohio next year, while Ohio State University and Central State University plan to plant their own hemp crops this summer.

The Agriculture Department must craft rules for the industry before farmers can start their own crops. Those plans must be approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture before they are made permanent, as required by the 2018 Farm Bill which legalized hemp federally.

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