The two candidates vying for Kentucky agriculture commissioner both say they see a big future for hemp in the Commonwealth. Democratic candidate Jean Marie Lawson-Spann believes in time, industrial hemp could mean tens of thousands of jobs in Kentucky. “We will recruit Ag processors that will help that come to fruition like when you look at makeup, baskets, clothing, automobile needs,” said Lawson-Spann.
Republican candidate Ryan Quarles says some of the state’s early successes could be in hemp oil extraction for treatment of epilepsy and seizures. “We have the pharmacy school right up the road here,” said Quarles. “We have a great agriculture research program and if there’s ever a place for the pharmaceutical side of hemp to succeed, it’s right here in Kentucky.”
Both candidates offer praise for current Agriculture Commissioner Jamie Comer’s work to further the hemp industry. The Hemp Industries Association Conference in Lexington this week attracted hundreds of people from around the country.