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State officials will test Michigan's first hemp crop

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Michigan agriculture officials will soon start testing hemp being grown in the state.

Michigan growers will start harvesting the state’s first industrial hemp crop in the coming weeks.

But before then, the state must test the crop to ensure it’s not exceeding federal limits on THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.

Gina Alessandri is the state’s Industrial Hemp Program director.  She says state workers developed the test without a federal standard -- which is still being developed.

“They were able to develop the rules based on the information that’s in the Farm Bill and based on what other states have done relative to the best testing.”

More than 32 thousand acres in Michigan are licensed for hemp production -- primarily serving the CBO oil industry.

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Radio since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting. During his two and a half decades in broadcasting, Steve has won numerous awards, including accolades from the Associated Press and Radio and Television News Directors Association. Away from the broadcast booth, Steve is an avid reader and movie fanatic. Q&A