The State of Hemp in the UK: Don’t make the same mistake Canada did – By Erin Lindley


“Home Office policy provides that licenses may be issued for the cultivation of cannabis plants with a low tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content for the production of hemp fiber for industrial purposes or the obtaining of seeds which are then pressed for their oil.

“1The leaves and flowers are still controlled parts of the plant. This does not allow U.K. farmers to process or sell the leaf or flower, causing them to leave it on the field. Canadian’s did that too. Learn from our mistakes!

Canada had similar restrictions when we started growing hemp 20 years ago. The industry saw success, thanks to entrepreneurs from the Natural Health Industry who took Hemp Hearts, Hemp Oil and Hemp Protein to market. These foods were welcomed with open arms by the crunchy, vegan, hippy, granola segment of the population, myself included. “Manitoba Harvest,” a Canadian hemp food company, recently sold for $419 million, proof of the market.

Nothing was really known about the leaf and flower, because the farmer had to leave it on the field. We focused on strains that provide a high seed/oil yield and didn’t think about the CBD content.

Strains like X59, Katani and Anka for grain and fiber. Agronomy was focused on the existing market, and since we had no access to the other parts of the plant, we didn’t pay much attention to them.

So, by the time legalization rolled around, we had 56,700 hectares of low-CBD Industrial Cannabis. So, now that CBD is on its way to global legalization and predicted to be a billion-dollar industry, Canada is not positioned to participate as well as it could. We may have legalized Cannabis, but other countries have a better chance to become the leaders in CBD thanks to our ill-informed regulations. Remember, hemp doesn’t grow in the winter. If the U.K. stands any chance of being a part of this cash crop, a little bit of planning would do wonders.

Industrial Cannabis sparks innovation creates sustainable industries and supports the farmer. Industrial Cannabis has no psycho-active effects. Restricting access to the flowers and the leaves within the UK is only inhibiting your participation in an industry that is coming into its own, no matter what. Besides, CBD is a vital medicine that has no toxic effects.

Wouldn’t you rather grow your own instead of importing it, if all those arguments don’t work, just tell the government they can’t tax something they make the farmers throw away. If you think about the leaves and flowers, i.e. the whole plant and teach your farmers how to grow it, you may be able to participate in the upcoming billion-dollar aspect of this industry, CBD, terpenes and the multitude of medicines this plant is promising to provide.

If the U.K. stands any chance of being a part of this cash crop, a little bit of planning would do wonders.

Written and Published By Erin Lindley In Weed World Magazine Issue 142


“Industrial hemp: licensing guidance – GOV.UK.”


Accessed 1 Jul. 2019


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