The Texas House of Representatives approved a bill on Tuesday to legalize hemp agriculture in the state. The measure, House Bill 1325 (HB1325), also removes hemp from the state’s list of controlled substances and legalizes cannabidiol, or CBD, and products made with the cannabinoid. The bill was passed without opposition via a voice vote and will have to be approved by the House in a second vote that is usually only a formality. The bill will then head to the Texas Senate for consideration.
Gene Hall, a spokesman for the Texas Farm Bureau, said that legalizing hemp will give the state’s farmers a new option for their operations.
“There’s no good reason for Texas farmers and ranchers not to have hemp as a crop option,” said Hall. “I suspect a lot of farmers will choose this option once it’s available. It’s a drought-tolerant crop and can be grown anywhere where cropping is prevalent right now.”
HB1325 has the support of many lawmakers and government officials in Texas’ majority Republican Party, including state Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller, who has pledged to “support any bill that helps Texas agriculture.”
If the bill is successful, Miller and the Department of Agriculture would be