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Ep 9. Mike Lewis: First Legal Hemp Farmer Since 1937

By Nate Eckman

Mike Lewis is the first federally permitted farmer to grow hemp in the United States since its prohibition in 1937. We talk about how is path to farming started with a few books on political philosophy, his love for hemp as America’s first true crop, and the promises it holds for the future of farming. Since he first started his campaign to deschedule hemp as a psychoactive drug, Mike has found himself in courts, on the steps of the capitol, and traveling the country to get people to believe in what he’s believed for so long - that hemp is a powerful crop that belongs in fields across America. And then, in shirts, fuel tanks, and flags across this great country as well. Mike talks about the history of hemp and its relation to marijuana and the obstacles he faces in his journey to see the crop grow beyond the fields and into the marketplace in more forms than just CBD Oil. Additionally, we talk about farming in general, the problems it's facing, and the technologies aiding farmers to predict problems on the ground and in their supply chains. Today, Mike heads two organizations, Third Wave Farms and Growing Warriors. Third Wave Farms exists to empower American farmers to embrace and sustain today's game-changing crop—industrial hemp. Growing Warriors trains, assists, and equips military veterans with the skills they need to produce high quality, naturally grown produce for their families, communities and country. You can learn more about Mike on Patagonia’s Youtube page, where you can watch short films about him including, Harvesting Liberty and Misunderstood: A Short History of Hemp - among others. You can learn more about farming by visiting the National Center for Appropriate Technology Mike’s favorite food philosopher is Windell Berry.

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