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USDA Green Lights Hemp Trade With $200,000 in Funding

The USDA recently approved funding for the National Industrial Hemp Council ($200,000) through the Market Access Program (MAP) of its Foreign Agricultural Service. Namely, the funding is aimed at supporting the hemp export market for the US.

The National Industry Hemp Council (NIHC) is an advocacy group promoting the hemp industry’s development through marketing and networking resources. One of its many goals is to place the US as a key exporter and a major player on the global hemp scene. 

The organization’s Senior VP for Trade and Marketing, Kevin Latner, commented that they were grateful for USDA’s vote of confidence and naming the NIHC the industry leader of the industrial hemp sector.

Latner also added that this recent announcement made it clear that NIHC was a trusted partner of the USDA for hemp food, feed, and fiber, as well as CBD brands looking to expand overseas.

The grant is expected to reinforce hemp marketing activity overseas, which may include paying for marketing efforts, funding trade missions, and other promotional activities. 

Specifically, the NIHC is planning to focus on China and Europe to facilitate and strengthen the hemp trade between the US and these two regions, which the NIHC identifies as crucial for the hemp and CBD markets

Moreover, the funding represents tacit USDA support of NIHC’s efforts and stamping the USDA brand on any policy work and foreign trade promotion. Likewise, it provides NIHC ample footing to negotiate with foreign peers in the hemp industry and government entities endowed with similar roles. 

The NIHC is to receive the funds by 2021 through the Food Export Association of the Midwest USA. 

In addition, the executive director of the organization, Tim Hamilton, stated that they were confident that NIHC would represent the best interests of US hemp businesses overseas.

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