House Bill 1277 and Senate Bill 955 would redefine hemp as an agricultural commodity and allow for the plant’s cultivation by licensed growers as part of a university-managed research program.
“Hemp is good for agriculture, it is good for the environment and is good for jobs”, says Delegate Joseph Yost, the bill’s primary sponsor. “[The bill] sets up the necessary framework for Virginia to begin immediately moving forward on researching industrial hemp and eventually moving towards full commercialization.”
Last year federal lawmakers approved a national spending bill which allows for the cultivation of hemp to be legally grown if it’s done as part of state-sanctioned research programs.
Last month Governor McAuliffe signed into law legislation to legalize the use of cannabis extracts for the treatment of seizure disorders.