It’s been a little over a year since Iowa legalized a bill that allows farmers to grow up to 40 acres of hemp, and Muscatine Community College became the first community college in Iowa to offer a program in this new crop.
Eastern Iowa Community Colleges invites interested community members to join in on a discussion with industry experts, as well as state representatives, to learn more about what we have learned from the first year of growing hemp:
Industrial Hemp Production: Lessons from the first year: March 10, 12 – 1 p.m., online via Facebook Live. To join in on the session, visit eicc.edu/hempinfo and click on the link during the designated day and time. Topics covered will include:
* Legislation that affects hemp planting, growing, processing and production
* The state inspection process
* Options for processing the hemp plant
* Considerations prior to planting
Speakers: Robin Pruisner, Iowa Hemp Administrator, Iowa Department of Agriculture; Representative Jared Klein, Iowa House District 78; Shane Mairet, Agriculture Instructor at Muscatine Community College; Mat Miller, Owner of ICanna, LLC Hemp Processing Facility.
Last fall, MCC launched a new one-year diploma program designed to teach students how to grow, harvest, process and market industrial hemp. Hemp is a versatile plant, perfect for small farms, those with an entrepreneurial spirit, or as an additional source of income on larger farms. Its uses include food from hemp seed, fiber from hemp stalks, and oil from the flowers and seeds. Products currently made with hemp include body care, textiles, insulation, paper, rope, molded plastics, animal bedding, paint, health food and more.
Students in the program complete three specific hemp-related courses, along with others already taught in the college’s long-established agriculture curriculum. Topics covered include rules and regulations governing the industry, growing stages of the plant from seed to harvest, and post-harvest processing.
Hemp offers the potential for significantly higher per acre incomes for producers compared to corn and soybeans, and the industry as a whole is expected to see an explosion of growth. Hemp could also offer a realistic way to expand the family farm and be able to financially support additional family members.
For questions about the program, contact Industrial Hemp Instructor Shane Mairet at 563-288-6024 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit eicc.edu/hemp to learn more. Toll-free 1-888-336-3907, email email@example.com.