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New Mexico lawmakers eye hemp production bill

file photo

file photo

SANTA FE, N.M. — A Democratic New Mexico senator wants to allow farmers to grow an industrial version of marijuana’s non-intoxicating cousin.

Sen. Cisco McSorley has filed legislation aimed at legalizing the selling hemp and licensing of farmers to grow the crop.

Hemp has a negligible content of THC, the psychoactive compound that gives marijuana users a high. Many products made from hemp, such as oils and clothing, are legal.

But some law enforcement agencies have said marijuana growers could camouflage their illegal crops with hemp plants.

The 2014 Farm Bill included a provision that allows institutions of higher education and state departments of agriculture to cultivate industrial hem

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 19 states, including California and Colorado, have laws to provide for hemp pilot studies or for production.