With hemp and cannabis legalization progressing in fits and burst around the world, the industry is starting to go global. Such progress creates a pressing need for integration into the global regulatory system. That is why one new group is taking hemp to the UN and other international organizations and bodies that will be responsible for outlining the future of the industry.
The new advocacy organization, which does not yet have a name, will work to establish industry development priorities and officially represent hemp stakeholders to global intergovernmental agencies. Their first goal is getting hemp and hemp extracts removed from the 1961 United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, said Daniel Kruse, president of the European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA) and one of the initiators of the global effort.
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An International Effort for the Sake of the Hemp Industry
The new hemp advocacy group plans to work with the World Health Organization, the U.N. Committee on Narcotic Drugs, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on issues related to that agency’s Codex Alimentarius, internationally recognized standards for food production and safety.
The association will also work on environmental issues and represent the hemp industry on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which is part of the United Nations Environment Program and the World Meteorological Organization.
Defending Hemp and the Industry Around the World
The new organization will “advocate for a diverse and robust hemp industry that benefits all stakeholders in the value chain,” according to a launch document that outlines the group’s mission.
“This international association can foster engagement in multilateral relationships, advance the industry agenda, statistical programs, partnerships, trade and global regulation,” Daniel Kruse said. “It will improve engagement of the hemp sector and benefit everyone, globally and domestically, as a result.”
A wide range of issues and challenges could also be addressed by the new advocacy association, including hemp’s potential to mitigate climate change or its participation in sustainable development, Kruse said.
Hemp Advocacy is a Co-creation Backed by Collaboration
“There is a compelling need to develop a new international hemp organization to allow industries around the world to create a single voice,” said Ted Haney, president and CEO of the Canadian Hemp Trade Alliance, another of the lead organizers. “The new advocacy organization will also create a place for hemp industry players to cooperate, coordinate, share information, advocate and co-create.”
Product and process standards, crop protection, standards for maximum chemical residue levels, seed registration standards and international standards for maximum THC levels for hemp flowers and finished products are among the many pressing issues identified by the initiative.
Kruse said the new global association also plans to create a parallel technical association that would publish an international hemp research journal and create a peer review network. This would fill a current gap in that research on hemp and its many applications is not compiled in a comprehensive manner, Kruse said.
Who are the Advocates for the Cannabis and Hemp Industry?
“The organizations that are coming together to form this new global initiative are formed by some of the most experienced and high-level professionals in the industry,” said Lorenzo Rolim da Silva, president of the Latin American Industrial Hemp Association.
“Our goal is to create a world where hemp is truly integrated into multiple other industries and agriculture around the world,” said Rolim da Silva.
“We look forward to joining this visionary mission to consolidate and strengthen cooperation for the development of the hemp industry globally,” said Anar Artur of the Mongolian Hemp Association. “Mongolian farmers and manufacturers are actively showing their interest and joining our local association. They are aware of the future of hemp. We welcome the hemp entrepreneurs in Mongolia.”
The group behind the project includes representatives from:
Canadian Hemp Trade Alliance ; Mongolian Hemp Association ; Australian Hemp Association ; European Industrial Hemp Association ; Hokkaido Industrial Hemp Association ; China Hemp Alliance ; Latin-American Industrial Hemp Association ; Friends of Hemp (Afrique du Sud) ; Chamber of Industrial Hemp of Paraguay (CCIP) ; Uttarakhand Hemp Association (Inde) ; and Indian Industrial Hemp Association.
And for the United States: American Trade Association for Cannabis and Hemp; Texas Hemp Growers Association; Oregon Hemp Association; National Hemp Association; Hemp Industries Association; National Industrial Hemp Council; Kentucky Hemp Industries Association; Hemp Feed Coalition.
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