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House proposal would regulate hemp production

SANTA FE — Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is backing legislation to support and regulate the commercial use of hemp in New Mexico.

The proposal, House bill 581, sponsored by Rep. Derrick Lente, D-Sandia Pueblo, would regulate the production, testing, research, manufacturing and transportation of hemp and similar products.

“The hemp industry has the potential to bring millions of dollars into New Mexico’s economy, and this bold legislation will bring New Mexico closer to making that a reality,” Lujan Grisham said in a written statement.

The proposal to establish a Hemp Manufacturing Act must clear two House committees before reaching the floor.

Lente said the bill would “help farmers and manufacturers access this lucrative industry while maintaining compliance with federal and state laws, and developing new, innovative products like CBD oils, textiles, and clothing.”

New Mexico lawmakers approved the growing of hemp for limited purposes in 2017 — a law opposed by then-Gov. Susana Martinez.

Hemp is a relative of marijuana, but it doesn’t have high levels of the chemical that makes people high.

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