With the rising popularity of CBD products, farmers are growing hemp. Some see it as a way to ride out President Trump’s fight over trade. Others fear it may not last.
ROSEVILLE, Ill. — Surrounded by waist-high hemp plants, Andy Huston, a sixth-generation farmer in Illinois, stopped to admire one of the ridged green leaves.
“I could just spend all day in my hemp field pulling weeds,” Mr. Huston said.
Mr. Huston planted corn and soybeans this year, about 1,100 acres of each, just as he has for decades. But he is depending on a far smaller 17-acre plot of hemp, newly legalized for cultivation in Illinois, to spare his struggling bottom line.
The alternative crop, he says, may be especially important this harvest. Flooding in the Midwest kept some fields wet late into the planting season. And farmers are struggling with the effects of a trade fight with China, which has crippled exports of American agricultural commodities like soybeans.
“Every time I put corn and soybeans in the ground, it’s a risk,” Mr. Huston said. He hopes the rising popularity of hemp-based cannabidiol, or CBD, will help him turn a profit. [Read More @ The New York Times]