WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Andy Barr voted for, and the U.S. House of Representatives approved, an amendment to H.R. 1947, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, that will allow Kentucky’s universities to grow and study industrial hemp.  The amendment was offered by Representatives Jared Polis (CO-2), Earl Blumenauer (OR-3) and Thomas Massie (KY-4).

Barr spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives last night in support of the amendment.

"I want to thank my colleagues in the House for approving this amendment,” said Congressman Barr. “I especially thank Representative Massie and Kentucky’s Agriculture Commissioner James Comer for all of their hard work.  Because of the successful inclusion of this amendment, passage of the House Farm Bill will take a deliberate and critical first step for industrial hemp in Kentucky, allowing Kentucky the authority to move forward with controlled and studied cultivation of industrial hemp.”

“Kentucky was once the nation’s leading producer of industrial hemp,” Barr continued.  “While the uses of hemp have grown significantly since Kentucky’s peak production in the mid-nineteenth century, the U.S. must now import much of the crop.  Kentucky deserves this opportunity to demonstrate the usefulness and viability of this crop for our farmers, and the hope this bill now offers.”

The House will continue to discuss and vote on amendments to H.R. 1947 through the day.  The vote on Final Passage of the bill is expected later today or next week.