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SIOUX CITY -- Sioux City-based NuHemp Group will host an industrial hemp forum from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Sioux City Public Museum. 

The forum will be an opportunity to learn more about industrial hemp and its agricultural, environmental and economic benefits. The event is free and open to the public, and farmers, entrepreneurs and ag industry stakeholders are encouraged to attend. 

The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp -- defined as non-psychoactive cannabis with 0.3 percent or less THC -- from the federal Controlled Substances Act, effectively permitting it as an agricultural commodity that can be grown. Iowa was one of nine states that had not taken part in a federally permitted hemp-growing pilot project prior to the 2018 Farm Bill. 

Iowa has not yet passed legislation allowing hemp cultivation in the state, though NuHemp is hoping that will change. 

According to a press release from NuHemp, Iowa farmers grew hemp during World War II for use in military uniforms, plane engine lubricant, ropes and parachutes. The group maintains that hemp is useful for cosmetic and beauty products, food, paper, construction materials and apparel fiber, as well as potentially for biofuels and plastics. 

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