KENTUCKY (WFIE) - A bill in the Kentucky General Assembly could shape the future of the hemp industry.
House Bill 236 was passed in the House and the Senate Agricultural Committee and now it’s due to be looked at by the Senate.
Senator Matt Castlen, who represents Kentucky’s 8th district, said he thinks this bill will even help farmers growing this year.
The proposed bill rewrites some existing Kentucky resolved statutes on hemp in the commonwealth.
Representative Melissa Prunty, representing Muhlenberg and South Hopkins Counties and a sponsor of the bill, said the bill gets current Kentucky statutes in line with federal USDA hemp testing guidelines.
“Just to kind of sum it up, it basically was just moving us into the regulatory process of just cleaning up some areas such as the transportation of the product," said Sen. Castlen. "How fast people are processing their paperwork for the testing. Just continuing to try to make the process better and smoother.”
Senator Castlen says he hopes this bill can help their statutes fall in line with federal guidelines.
“You hear a lot of producers talking about the time that it took to get some of their test results back, and also how the federal government, how the handling of the product is supposed to be, and we hope that it streamlines that process," said Sen. Castlen.
Castlen also says he hopes over the next few years, he hopes hemp can help generate more income.
“I hope this area continues to see a bright future with it," said Castlen.
We also asked Sen. Castlen if he’s heard about issues some hemp growers say they’re experiencing with Owensboro based Bluegrass BioExtracts. Some growers said they think the company isn’t honoring their contracts with farmers.
Castlen said he is aware of the issue, but hasn’t heard any personal stories.
Hemp in Kentucky is a topic we will continue to follow.