Congressman Anthony Brindisi was in Kirkwood today touring hemp manufacturer Empire Standard’s facility.
“There’s a lot of roadblocks through federal legislation and regulations that have kept the industry from reaching its full potential,” says Castetter.
Castetter Sustainability Group CEO and Empire Standard Partner Kaelan Castetter says Brindisi who serves on the House Agriculture Committee is in a unique position to help level the playing field in the hemp industry. Empire Standard manufactures CBD dietary supplements and other hemp extract products. While New York regulates the hemp industry requiring products to meet FDA standards while other states do not.
“The 2018 Farm Bill was a big step for the Hemp Industry but ensuring that fair regulations from the FDA and USDA are put out is key,” says Castetter.
Brindisi is co-sponsoring legislation that would direct the FDA to classify CBD as a dietary supplement. A move that would force the hemp manufacturers across the country to meet federal standards.
“This can be a real economic driver for us in the Southern Tier and I think Broome County in particular can be a real leader in hemp and CBD,” says Brindisi. “With great manufacturers like this that are doing wonderful work in Broome County it’s good to see this. We need to figure out how to grow this industry. How do we align regulations to make this industry even better and that’s something I’m committed to doing.”
Castetter says while there is still plenty more work to do, the future of hemp locally is very bright.
“This is a 10, 20, 50 year play,” says Castetter. “We’re developing an industry that’s going to be able to create good paying jobs and create good economic activity for the long term. What we need are local businesses such as this, local stakeholders getting involved and building for the long term.”