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Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture Ryan Quarles released the following statement Oct. 29 regarding the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) proposed hemp regulations.

"Over the next several weeks, the Kentucky Department of Agriculture will conduct a comprehensive review of our existing hemp program and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's interim final rule," Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. "We will have open dialogue with our growers, processors, and industry stakeholders about what this plan means for our state. I would like to thank the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Secretary Sonny Perdue, and Under Secretary Greg Ibach for their swift movement on putting together a rule for discussion, not even a year after the 2018 Farm Bill was signed."

For those interested in learning more about Kentucky's hemp program, KDA will host a Kentucky Hemp Summit for growers, processors, and other interested parties on Dec. 4, 2019, at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville.

The 2018 Farm Bill removed industrial hemp from the federal Controlled Substances Act, gave hemp growers increased access to USDA programs, and outlined the minimum requirements a state regulatory framework must contain to earn approval by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The federal Risk Management Agency announced in August that certain hemp growers may obtain insurance coverage under the Whole-Farm Revenue Protection Program in 2020.

For more information about KDA's hemp program, go to kyagr.com/hemp.

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