Fight to farm hemp turns legal

Boko PIC: THALEFANG CHARLES
Boko PIC: THALEFANG CHARLES

Fresh Standard, a company that says it was granted an exemption by the Agriculture Ministry to farm hemp in Kanngwe, before being raided by the Narcotics Squad, is suing government for the right to restart production of the cash crop. 

Barend Daniel de Beer, Fresh Standard’s director, says he invested millions of pula into the project based on an exemption granted by former agriculture minister, Patrick Ralotsia, only for police to raid and uproot his fledgling crops last May. 

At that point, the company had purchased and planted 30 different cannabis sativa (hemp) seeds in order to assess which strain would thrive in the conditions on the farm, which belonged to Ralotsia. Seeds costing more than €90,000 had been bought and an offtake agreement to produce 5,000 litres of hemp oil per month, signed.  Hemp, or industrial hemp, is known as a variety of the cannabis sativa plant species that is grown specifically for the industrial or medicinal uses of its derived products. 

Editor's Comment
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