Community college offering more information on newly-launched hemp production program

Local News

A community college in Iowa is taking to Facebook Live to spread the word about its newest program for students.

On Tuesday, Dec. 15, Muscatine Community College will host an information session for anyone interested in learning more about its Industrial Hemp Production Program.

The session will begin at 5:30 p.m. via the college’s Facebook page.

This fall, Muscatine Community College launched its 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,” said the college in a news release. “Products currently made with hemp include body care, textiles, insulation, paper, rope, molded plastics, animal bedding, paint, health food and more.”

Production of hemp first became legal in the United States in January 2020, with Iowa farmers able to grow up to 40 acres.

Muscatine Community College says students currently enrolled in the program have already produced “one of the state’s first crops.”

Along with others already taught in the college’s long-established agriculture curriculum, students enrolled in the Industrial Hemp Production Program will complete three specific hemp-related courses about the following topics:

  • Rules and regulations governing the industry
  • Growing stages of the plant from seed to harvest
  • 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,” added the college. “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 by email. More information is also here.

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