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Colorado Farmers and Lawmakers Want to Turn Industrial Hemp into Livestock Feed

A recently passed piece of legislation will create a task force to investigate using hemp as a food for farm animals.

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In states with recreational or medical legalization, legal weed has made life a whole lot easier for patients with debilitating ailments, responsible adults who like to partake every once and awhile and full-blown stoners. Now, a new piece of legislation in Colorado and a handful of interested farmers are looking to expand those benefits to the state’s livestock. 

According to the Coloradoan, the industrial hemp bill, which passed during the state legislature’s most recent session, will set up a task force to investigate the possibility of using a non-psychoactive version of the cannabis plant to feed farm animals.

Industrial hemp doesn’t have significant levels of THC, but it is high in nutrients and easy to grow, requiring minimal water and care to produce high yields. The soon-to-be-appointed task force will take a 360-degree approach to their study, looking of course at the effects on livestock, but also at environmental issues and the structure that might be necessary to comply with local cannabis regulations. 

"We're not advocating one position or another, except that Colorado ranchers and farmers are protected while affording them the opportunity to explore new markets," Hollis Glenn, director of the inspection and consumer services division of the Colorado Department of Agriculture, told the Coloradoan.

Glenn also noted that an invite has already been extended to the Food and Drug Administration to help participate in the task force’s study.