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Local farmers learn about growing hemp

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. - Local farmers got the chance to learn about growing hemp.

Cornell Cooperative Extension hosted a hemp research update and information session. 

Current and potential hemp growers got to hear from a panel of experts and ask any questions they might have.

Professor of Plant Breeding and Genetics from Cornell University Larry Smart says their research shows that Upstate New York has a unique potential to grow very productive hemp yields.

He says the blooming industry could provide a huge economic boost to the region. "I think there's a lot of potential to create jobs. Again these processing facilities are going to create jobs in the Binghamton area and all of the supporting grower activities and other ancillary actives surrounding hemp. I think there's a lot of potential for job growth around the hemp industry in New York State."

As the industry is still in its early stages, many farmers have a lot of questions says Cornell Cooperative Associate Director of Agriculture Brian Aukema. 

He says the goal is to educate the farmers to help them be successful with whatever path they choose. 

Aukema says, "There's a lot of curiosity. So we're trying to answer a lot of questions and understand the curiosity that's coming out and to put a lot of those questions at ease. Some of them its for some of them its not for. But we're trying to give them the information they need so they can decide if it's a product to grow on their own farm."

Another topic of the panel was CBD which is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant used for multiple medicinal purposes. 

Smart says the demand for CBD has been growing rapidly.

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