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Hemp and the Challenges of Farming’s Frontier

Logan Bird waters about 90,000 hemp seedlings on Andy Huston's farm in western Illinois. (Photo by Madelyn Beck / Harvest Public Media)

Hemp. It’s the same type of plant as marijuana, but with less THC -- the component that gets you high.  Under new laws, many U.S. farmers are now growing hemp for the first time in more than 80 years.  That includes farmers in Kansas and Missouri.  But as Harvest Public Media’s Madelyn Beck discovered, hemp’s potential as a regular crop comes with a lot of risk.

Discover more about this story. Madelyn Beck is a reporter for Harvest Public Media.  Follow her on Twitter

Harvest Public Media reports on food systems, agriculture and rural issues through a collaborative network of reporters and partner stations throughout the Midwest and Great Plains.  Learn more at


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