New Poll Shows Strong Voter Support for Industrial Hemp Farming in North Dakota; 74% of North Dakotans Support Regulated Hemp Farming; Vote Hemp Calls on North Dakota Delegation in Congress to Take Action

Mar 12, 2008, 01:00 ET from Vote Hemp

    BISMARCK, N.D., March 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Vote Hemp, the
 nation's leading grassroots organization working to give farmers the right
 to grow industrial hemp (the oilseed and fiber varieties of the Cannabis
 plant), which can be made into food, clothing, paper, body care products,
 bio-fuel and even auto parts, has released a new poll of 807 likely North
 Dakota voters about industrial hemp. North Dakota is the only state to
 implement rules for farmers to grow industrial hemp; however, those farmers
 are still threatened with federal prosecution and loss of their farms
 through asset forfeiture if they do so. The telephone poll has a 3.5%
 margin of error and sampled likely North Dakota voters on February 11,
 2008. The survey was conducted by the respected research firm Zogby
 International on behalf of Vote Hemp and was sponsored by Dr. Bronner's
 Magic Soaps.
     According to the poll, a total of 74% of North Dakota voters support
 changing federal law to allow farmers to grow hemp, including 40% who
 "strongly support" and another 34% who "somewhat support" changes so that
 farmers in the U.S. can supply manufacturers with hemp seed, oil and fiber.
 Presently, American companies must import hemp from other countries.
 Despite the stifling effect that relying on imports has had on the use of
 hemp in everyday products, the Hemp Industries Association (HIA) estimates
 that annual retail sales of hemp products in North America exceeded $330
 million in 2007.
     "The poll results released today confirm that there is overwhelming
 support in North Dakota for federal relief on the issue of industrial
 hemp," said Vote Hemp President Eric Steenstra. "The state legislature
 passed bi-partisan hemp farming legislation, Agriculture Commissioner
 Johnson issued carefully-crafted licensing regulations, and Governor John
 Hoeven has expressed his support for the effort. Now we need the North
 Dakota delegation in Congress to help their farmers grow industrial hemp,
 as the obstacle continues to be the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
 We hope that Members of Congress recognize the fact that this issue has
 broad bi-partisan support in North Dakota and across the U.S. We feel that
 it is time for North Dakota's congressional delegation to take on this
 challenging issue," added Steenstra, who met with North Dakota
 Representative Earl Pomeroy's Chief of Staff last week to discuss the
 issue. "We hope that evidence of the broad-based support for hemp farming
 in North Dakota will convince them that they need to learn more about this
 issue and begin working on a solution."
     More than 30 industrialized nations grow industrial hemp and export it
 to the U.S. Hemp is the only crop that is illegal to grow in America yet
 legal for Americans to import. Sales of hemp food and body care products
 have grown rapidly in recent years, fueling an expansion of hemp farming in
 Canada, where farmers are expected to grow 10,000 to 15,000 acres this
     Poll questions and results regarding industrial hemp farming policy and
 consumer attitudes on hemp products and nutrition can be viewed online at
     Vote Hemp is a national, single-issue, non-profit organization
 dedicated to the acceptance of and a free market for low-THC industrial
 hemp and to changes in current law to allow U.S. farmers to once again grow
 this agricultural crop. More information about hemp legislation and the
 crop's many uses may be found at and BETA SP or DVD Video News Releases featuring
 footage of hemp farming in other countries are available upon request by
 contacting Adam Eidinger at 202-744-2671.

SOURCE Vote Hemp