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KayDee Gilkey Colorado Hemp for Cattle Feed Study
by KayDee Gilkey, click here for bio

Program: Land & Livestock Report
Date: April 24, 2017

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Both Washington and Colorado have hemp production industry. In this year’s Colorado legislative session, a bill was signed into law that directs the Colorado Department of Agriculture to study the feasibility of allowing livestock producers to use hemp in animal feed. Currently the practice is against federal law.

Colorado Cattlemen’s Association Executive Vice President Terry Fankhauser says that this study puts the proverbial cart before the horse by studying feasibility rather than seeking federal approval as well as other additional uses for hemp.

Fankhauser: “To feed a product that is considered under federal government and FDA guidelines as an adulterer product to our livestock, makes no sense to risk a $1 billion industry. So we opposed the bill and it went to a study. The study really isn’t a study but really more of a conversation about advocates amongst all sides of the issue — which is fine. But really as I have advised some of the more tempered and logical proponents of finding additional uses for hemp. I’ve told them, ‘Go and see approval for your product. You are going to have to make sure that it does not contain a harmful level of THC. Take a federal allowance for doing it.’ And then we all know we are on legal footing and over the long term if it is a viable feed source, I’m sure that livestock will consider using it. But don’t try and adulter a food system or a live animal system through state legislation. I get that marijuana is illegal federally and legal in Colorado — but we are not going to do that with beef though.”

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