The DEA has recently declared that it would finally rip down some of the walls that have stopped the scientific community from examining cannabis by providing more possibilities for institutions of higher learning to get involved with the cultivation research of cannabis. A new information shows that the DEA’s offer to help more federally sanctioned cultivators who may not bring about the vigorous transformation the marijuana community had hoped for because many universities have absolutely no desire for cultivating marijuana.
Recently, the people at STAT contacted close to a dozen universities across the united states some of which already run industrial hemp programs to find out just how many of these schools are excited to crawl between the same sheets as the federal government to expand research on marijuana. What they discovered is that none of the big time universities they contacted with seem to have any plans of joining Uncle Sam’s cultivation network.Cornell University, the University of Kentucky and Virginia Tech, all stated they were not interested in cultivating cannabis. The University of California, Davis, and the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, said they had no intentions to get involved with the DEA. Colorado State University, Oregon State University, and Purdue University made the same statement.
For the past several decades, the DEA has relied on the University of Mississippi alone to grow all of the cannabis it distributes for investigative study purposes. Because of this, much of the marijuana community was excited by the news of the DEA’s plan to allow additional universities to join in the marijuana cultivation game. Any university that receives permission to begin growing marijuana for the government would be forced to cough up millions of dollars in construction expenses alone before it could ever get started.
This past year, a post from the National Institute on Drug Abuse showed that its contract with the University of Mississippi, which is valued close to almost $69 million, needed the school to cultivate marijuana in a “Secure and video monitored outdoor facility of approximately 12 acres” and run an indoor compound of at least 1000 square feet, “Having controls for light intensity, photo cycles, temperature, humidity, and carbon dioxide concentration.” Interestingly, the STAT report goes on to suggest that independent growers will be another sector vying for federal cultivation contracts.
“In this context, illegal activity includes any activity in violation of the CSA as well as activity in violation of State or local law.” The memo goes on to say that while cultivating cannabis in states that have legitimized the plant one way or another “Does not automatically disqualify an applicant, it may weight heavily against” them.
However, the DEA is now officially accepting applications for additional growers, the drug agency has not established any timeframe for when it will make a decision.
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