iHEMPx, High Grade Hemp Seed Partner With Warren Wilson College For Hemp Research
iHEMPx (International Hemp Exchange) and High Grade Hemp Seed, global leaders in the production and sales of premium hemp genetics, are partnering with Warren Wilson College in North Carolina to support a student-led regenerative agriculture and research project in industrial hemp.
The Warren Wilson hemp farming project will act as a demonstration area for local farmers who are interested in learning more about hemp and sustainable land management. Students and professors will study industrial hemp as a food source for animals, as well as for clothing, CBD oil, biofuel, and vegetable oil, among other uses.
“This is an exciting development for the college’s agricultural program,” said Dave Ellum, Dean of Land Resources at Warren Wilson College. “We’re able to demonstrate novel methods for growing hemp and deliver crucial knowledge that will improve farmers’ results in the field. The project also offers the opportunity to provide incredible student experiences through research and education focused on this sustainable and valuable crop, and it supports the diversification of agriculture in the region.”
Under license of the North Carolina Industrial Hemp Pilot Research Program, Warren Wilson College planted its first plot of industrial hemp on college land in July of 2019. The goal was to test the efficacy of a late-season planting, comparing direct seeding to greenhouse starts.
The industrial hemp program is part of Warren Wilson College’s Land Innovation initiative, which uses the college’s applied learning philosophy to share land management information with regional landowners, as well as spread hope and encourage meaningful action against climate change.
iHEMPx and High Grade Hemp Seed are donating hemp seed for the research project, as well as providing advice and support for students and professors during the 2020 hemp growing season. With staff located in nearby Asheville, iHEMPx will be actively supporting the project by offering the expertise of their team – some of the first licensed hemp farmers in the U.S. – to students in the field. High Grade and iHEMPx will also support students and staff through coordinated webinars and question-and-answer sessions through the growing season.
“When we were approached about contributing to the hemp farming project at Warren Wilson College, we leapt at the chance,” said Mike Leago, founder of iHEMPx. “Along with donating seed, our entire team is looking forward to supporting the project in more hands-on ways throughout the season.”
Research from the hemp program will provide information to farmers about how to grow hemp sustainably and successfully, so they can focus on monetizing their crops and contributing to the local economy. For students, the hemp farming project will build deep expertise in sustainable and regenerative agriculture and practical experience farming one of the most promising and lucrative crops of the 21st century, seeding the hemp industry of the future.