MUSCATINE, Iowa (KWQC) – A new industrial hemp production program will be available this fall at Muscatine Community College.
“Muscatine Community College (MCC) is excited to announce a new diploma program to provide the training needed to succeed in this developing area,” Eastern Iowa Community Colleges said in a media release. “Beginning this fall, our one-year Industrial Hemp Production program will provide students the opportunity to be among the first to work this new crop.”
Anyone interested in learning more about the program or beginning hemp production can attend one of four online Facebook Live information sessions on MCC’s Facebook page.
The sessions, which will begin at 7 p.m., include: April 21: Student Information SessionApril 28: Obtaining Your Hemp Growing LicenseMay 5: What is Hemp?May 12: Government Requirements and Issues
In the program, students will learn how to grow, harvest, process, and market industrial hemp.
According to EICC, hemp is a versatile plant, perfect for small farms, those with an entrepreneurial spirit, or as an additional source of income on larger farms. Its uses include food from hemp seed, fiber from hemp stalks, and oil from the flowers and seeds. Products currently made with hemp include body care, textiles, insulation, paper, rope, molded plastics, animal bedding, paint, health food and more.
Students in the program will complete three specific hemp-related courses, along with others already taught in the college’s long-established agriculture curriculum. Topics covered include rules and regulations governing the industry, growing stages of the plant from seed to harvest, and post-harvest processing.
Hemp offers the potential for significantly higher per acre incomes for producers compared to corn and soybeans, and the industry as a whole is expected to see an explosion of growth, according to EICC.
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