U of I and Hemp
Pamela Hutchinson, a potato cropping systems weed scientist at the U of I’s Aberdeen Research and Extension Center, and Chad Jackson, the facility’s operations manager, are among a small group of growers licensed to raise hemp in Idaho.
This is the first season in which hemp production has been allowed in the state, and no herbicides are currently available to Idaho hemp farmers.
Unable to find funding for large-scale trials, Hutchinson planted some small industrial hemp plots under irrigation, using seed supplied by IND Hemp of Fort Benton, Mont.
In addition to her encouraging herbicide-tolerance results, businessmen involved in the new industry have taken notice of the exceptional quality of Hutchinson’s crop, which shows potential for Idaho to become a major hemp-production state.
“I met with an agronomist from IND Hemp. They’re really excited about how good the hemp looked in my trial and the possibilities of raising hemp under irrigation,” Hutchinson said.
This winter, U of I will work out details of an Extension program with the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes in southeast Idaho, teaching members how to register to produce hemp through the Idaho State Department of Agriculture and how to grow a successful crop. The tribes plan to raise hemp starting next spring.