FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - The Kentucky Senate has passed a bill to update state law governing hemp production.
Senators voted 35-0 Tuesday to send the measure to the House. It's a big contrast from four years ago, when the state's original hemp law drew stiff resistance.
Kentucky is at the national forefront in efforts to return hemp to mainstream status.
For this year's hemp crop, Kentucky agricultural officials approved 209 applications from growers, allowing them to produce up to 12,800 acres.
Hemp is prized for its oils, seeds and fiber.
Hemp and marijuana are the same species, but hemp has a negligible amount of THC, the psychoactive compound that gives marijuana users a high.
Hemp got a limited reprieve from the 2014 federal Farm Bill, which allows state agriculture departments to designate hemp projects for research and development.
The legislation is Senate Bill 218.