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Meeting to explore hemp growing in Southwest Virginia

Staff Report • Apr 23, 2018 at 9:05 AM

DUFFIELD — Can industrial hemp be a profitable crop for Southwest Virginia farmers in the future?

That topic will be explored on Tuesday at a public meeting, which will be held from 6-8 p.m. at Natural Tunnel State Park’s Cove Ridge Conference Center.

During the meeting, experts on the subject will discuss the economic possibilities and explore the issues that potential hemp growers might encounter.

Speakers will include Ryan Huish, a Scott County farmer and biology professor at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise. Huish’s students are experimenting with developing hemp varieties for the region.

Also speaking will be Anthony Flaccavento, a Washington County, Virginia, farmer and candidate for U.S. Congress in the Ninth District.

Flaccavento, who directed Appalachian Sustainable Development for more than a decade, was instrumental in establishing the highly successful farmers markets and local foods movement in Southwest Virginia and East Tennessee.

The meeting will be followed by a Q&A session, and the public is invited to attend.

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