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HEMP INDUSTRY IN AUSTRALIA
THE STORY SO FAR
1. ON February 15, HEMP South Australia rang to say that their government had decided to investigate the viability of a hemp fibre industry. They were acting swiftly, amending the relevent laws by regulation rather than legislation, and they expected to have over 100 farmers engaged in a hemp growing trial by April
2 On the 16 Feb, I put out the following press release for Queensland HEMP.
HEMP MEDIA RELEASE
GOSS SCORNS BILLION DOLLAR CROP! HEMP FOR FIBRE NOT WOODCHIP!
Yesterday the South Australian Government announced plans to fast-track the hemp industry in that state. In April, 100 South Australian farmers will begin growing hemp throughout the state.
"South Australia has stolen a march on Queensland in the development of a hemp industry due to Goss government inaction," Brisbane HEMP spokesperson, John Jiggens, declared.
"The people who will pay in the long run will be the farmers struggling in the forgotten rural areas of Queensland." Mr Jiggens said.
" Hemp is the glamour crop of the nineties. It has the potential to be a billion dollar crop."
"Marijuana prohibition not only clogs our courts and prisons," Mr Jiggens said. " It denies our farmers the right to grow the crop of the decade.
"The South Australians have realised this. When will Queensland ever learn??"
John Jiggens for HEMP 17/2/95
THE STORY GROWS
The Courier Mail reponded to my press release by ringing up the Dept of Agriculture in Queensland, and wrote an article called HEMP PLAN REJECTED.
"The Queensland government has ruled out the development of a hemp industry. . . . A spokesman for Queensland Primary Industries Minister Ed Casey said yesterday the department was investigating
several plants for the development of a fibre industry. Hemp was less attractive in Queensland than several other plants because it was more suited to temperate climates."
Both the Greens and the National parties in Queensland criticised the government for rejecting hemp out of hand, and the Opposition Leader Rob Borbidge said he had commissioned a study into legalising the crop. This was duly reported in an article called DEBATE ON LEGALISING HEMP GROWS.
INFORMATION NEEDED FOR FURTHER PRESS RELEASES
What I was wondering is this; the Dept of Agriculture have dismissed hemp out of hand on the assumption it will not grow well in Queensland's tropical and sup-tropical climate; Queensland stretches from 29 degrees S to 11 S. I know Italy had a superb fibre hemp industry. Where else in the world was fibre hemp grown in tropical and sub-tropical areas???
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