Noem remains opposed to hemp legislation

PIERRE, S.D. (DRG News) – The U.S. Department of Agriculture has published an interim final rule formalizing the U.S. Domestic Hemp Production Program, but growing the crop isn’t likely to be legal in South Dakota any time soon.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem says her staff has been looking through the 150+ pages of information to determine how it may impact the state.

Noem says she remains opposed to industrial hemp in South Dakota because of the potential impact it will have on public safety and law enforcement’s ability to enforce drug laws.

Noem says the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized industrial hemp production in the U.S. and the recently released rules from USDA, don’t preempt a state’s ability to adopt stronger rules or prohibit production all together.

Hemp and marijuana are both cannabis plants but have different levels of THC, the ingredient that causes a high. Noem says she will continue to make the case that legalizing hemp will, by default, legalize marijuana.