Gov. Mary Fallin signed a new law back in April to create the Oklahoma Industrial Hemp Agricultural Pilot Program.
Now, Redlands Community College in El Reno is launching its research related to the program. Students will work with farmers to study the crop’s viability in the state.
Oklahoma City-based Botanac is providing the seeds to select farmers across Oklahoma to produce hemp fiber, grain and cannabidiol (CBD), targeting 1,000 acres. The crop hasn’t been grown in the state for generations.
“Our whole goal with this is to not just find a crop that’s viable for Oklahoma, part of the research that we’re doing with the Department of Agriculture is the fact that we need to find is this going to be something that will grow the economy of Oklahoma,” Redlands President Jack Bryant told News 9.
Tina Walker with Botanac said industrial hemp has many uses.
“Over 50,000 applications for industrial hemp with the fiber, clothing, lotions, obviously, CBD oil, which is something everybody is interested in right now,” she added.
Students will visit the farm sites for testing and evaluate soil, water and growing methods.
Their data will be turned over to the Department of Agriculture and shared with producers across the state.