A Busy Session Ahead!
Welcome to the first edition of our newsletter! As the legislative session kicks off today, we're gearing up for an active period. Stay tuned for weekly Capitol updates and exciting networking events lined up for this year. We will visit the Capitol on 1/23, and 2/6 with more dates and information to come.
President's Update by Sean Hackman
A Message from the Helm
I would like to thank all of our continuing members, and especially like to welcome all of our newest members and partnerships. We, as a Board of Directors have been working very hard to address and play defense on any draft bills against us, while playing offense on drafting our own consumer safety bills. This is very challenging so we encourage anyone to offer any feedback that you may have to help our industry as a whole. Our goal, through membership strength and minimal regulation, is to promote consumer safety in a way as to keep the hemp industry alive and thriving in the state of Missouri. Thank you all!
Executive Director's Update by Courtney Allen Curtis
A Year of Growth and Challenges
2024 is set to be a pivotal year. Our primary focus is on defeating bills that pose a threat to our industry. We also aim to expand our reach through increased membership and a host of engaging activities. Don't miss our group's first visit to the Capitol on January 23, where we'll connect with allies and potential supporters.
We're excited to announce new partnerships with American Healthy Alternatives Association, Missouri Petroleum & Convenience Association, and the Hemp Beverage Alliance. These collaborations open up new avenues for advocacy and growth.
These memberships offer opportunity for us to grow our membership, build coalitions and to help influence areas that impact our industry.
Shaping Our Future
Our Board has been actively engaging with the media to discuss the potential impacts of upcoming bills. Following our recent draft bill review, we invite your comments before our final review meeting on January 5, 2024, at 10 AM. [RSVP Here] You can review the current version of our draft bill here.
Our board is in the process of considering adding new members to the board, with the retirement of our former Chairperson Tyler Morgan an opportunity to usher in a new era of growth has led the board to consider adding committees for areas of growth in Hemp from Beverages, Seed, Fiber, Retail, etc. if you are interested in joining these committees please feel free to reach out to our Executive Director at 573-200-6291 to discuss how you would like to help grow the association.
Lobbyist Update by Eapen Thampy
Advocacy at Work
2024 Farm Bill negotiations will likely be in full swing sometime in early spring - stay tuned for more information
We anticipate the first of several approvals by the FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine for hemp seed ingredients in animal food
We continue to seek input on what a state regulatory bill for cannabinoid products look like. As many of you know, we are in opposition to House Bill 1781 and Senate Bill 984, which would regulate "intoxicating hemp cannabinoids" as marijuana.
The 2024 session of the Missouri General Assembly starts today, January 4. If you haven't already, look up your state Representative and Senator at www.house.mo.gov and email them to oppose House Bill 1781 and Senate Bill 984.
We are seeking state grant funding for hemp seed and fiber processing and infrastructure investment and will update as the state budget process moves forward.
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