Indiana Hemp Farmers Forming Co-Op to Focus on Fiber

Leaders with the Indiana Farmers Union are spearheading an effort to bring hemp fiber farming back into the state.

While cannabidiol (CBD) has been the darling of the U.S. hemp industry, a pocket of farmers in southern Indiana are trying to shift the focus to fiber.

Farmers are working to establish a functional cooperative in the southern part of the state, where a bulk of the hemp grown for fiber was in 2019. Marty Mahan, president of the Indiana Farmers Union hemp chapter, is spearheading a collaborative effort that will not only eliminate some of the challenges he and fellow fiber farmers endured last season, but also generate larger profit margins that most U.S. fiber farmers have yet to see.

“Myself and some other farmers in the area are in the process of setting up a non-profit cooperative,” Mahan says. “The goal is for it to be farmer-owned and to have our own processing facility so we are the middleman. When we get around to making a profit, that will go to the farmers, not a corporation.”
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