Two Cal Poly students are making a push to bring industrial hemp research to the university in the coming years.
Ted Fitzgerald and Conor Stephen have gathered nearly 3,000 signatures from students and faculty members in support of an agricultural pilot program that would study the growth, cultivation and marketing of industrial hemp.
This type of research is allowed at the federal level under the Agricultural Act of 2014 — also known as the U.S. Farm Bill — but its complicated regulations and requirements have led to resistance from the Cal Poly administration.
According to Vote Hemp, a grassroots hemp advocacy organization working to change state and federal laws to allow commercial hemp farming, more than 30 universities around the country conducted research on the crop in 2017.
“There’s not a well-established university in California that is taking on this research,” said Fitzgerald, a junior studying agricultural business. “We feel the need that Cal Poly should be the spearhead within the California industry. I personally believe that California is the ultimate validation for this whole industry.”
The university’s administration isn’t ready to lead that charge. [Read more at The Tribune]