Hemp oil growing community support
MEMBER for Burnett Stephen Bennett is calling for a Parliamentary Inquiry to investigate Queensland’s regulatory frameworks surrounding medicinal hemp.
Mr Bennett’s call follows a tour he recently undertook of an Agri Fibre Industries property in Bundaberg, where a grower is developing an industrial hemp oil variety.
“The producer is developing an industrial hemp oil variety that could potentially be used for export as a medicine if the regulation allowed export to countries that allow medicinal cannabis,” Mr Bennett said.
“It’s my understanding that under the present law, the resident is allowed to breed, grow and possess industrial hemp.
“Industrial hemp can be used legally throughout the Commonwealth for fibre, topical oil and processed cannabis products other than food for human consumption or as a medical product.
“Growers in the Burnett are ready to invest in the important new industry of hemp fibre and possibly medicinal cannabis production, but it seems they have hit a road block,” Mr Bennett said.
Mr Bennett said current state legislation did not allow for the export of such products.
“Agri Fibre Industries wants to have a fair go with an export licence to supply countries with raw medicinal product and building products from industrial hemp from Queensland to countries that allow such products,” he said.
Mr Bennett said he came away from the Bundaberg facility with a new-found respect for the industry.
“I’m really keen to further investigate these exciting opportunities and the technological advances that have brought this company closer to commercial operations right here in the Bundaberg region,” he said.
Mr Bennett called on the Minister for Agriculture to remove the red tape facing producers such as Agri Fibre Industries to support export licences for medicinal hemp and food products.
“This would have huge benefits for our region in the creation of employment opportunities and would value add to existing agricultural practices through off-season planting, and assist in building a wider industry based on value added manufacturing of agricultural produces, leading to export income from products and technological services.
“I see no reason why the Agriculture minister wouldn’t want to get behind this initiative. It’s right on her doorstep.”
An industrial hemp crop.