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  • Writer's pictureIHGA

Marching into the 2024 Season

What a busy and productive month it has been as we gear up for the growing season and for our Hemp Lobby Day next month!

Rachel spent the day in Springfield on the 13th for the 53rd IL AG Legislative Lobby Day. This was the IHGA's third year participating and donating to commodity baskets for each legislator participating. This is also our third year of donating hemp straws to the baskets - a reminder to representatives that hemp is a crop that can help us cut down on single use plastics!

IALD brings together representatives from around 50 agricultural organizations to meet with state lawmakers, providing an opportunity to strengthen and build relationships among groups effecting Illinois agriculture. We look forward to participating again next year.

On the 27th we attended the IL Hemp Summit at the Illinois State Fairgrounds.

Presenters included representatives from IDOA, USDA, FSA, and the IL Crop Improvement Association, as well as university researchers and professors from UIUC (pictured, Dr. DK Lee), SIU, WIU, and and IVCC.

There was a lot of great information shared and we will be sure to share the link for the recordings when IDOA makes them available. For now here are few highlights we jotted down in our notes ~

Along with updates in university research from around the state we were happy to hear from USDA Hemp Specialist, Emily Febles that despite another delay with the Farm Bill, there is discussion happening around raising the THC limit to 1%, removing the DEA lab requirement, and fiber grain testing exemptions.

 Dr. Karla Gage , Associate Professor at SIU's College of AG, Life and Phys. Science, shared her research on maximizing hemp yields through Integrated Weed Management (IWM) and invites all to catch up on a new season of data at the annual SIU Hemp Symposium in September - details to come!

Dr. DK Lee, Professor of Agronomy and Field Research Specialist, Dana Landry from UIUC's Department of Crop Sciences discussed improving hemp genetics and developing best management practices for grain and fiber production.

They invite everyone interested in attending or sponsoring the 2024 Hemp Research Open House in August to sign up using the scan-able code below.

We are proud to be sponsoring Dr. Lee's research again this year and co-hosting the open house. We hope you spread the news and catch up with us there!

Hemp Highlights Night followed the summit and was a blast! We shared updates, stories, pizza and local brews, and some awesome local hemp products from our friends at Sun Drenched Organic Farm. Shop tours and samples were available down the street with our friends and Sponsors Prairie State Hemp - we hope you had a chance to stop in and will keep them in mind the next time you're in Springfield...

...Possibly in a few weeks when we will ALL be in town for the 2024 IL Hemp Lobby Day!!

Why Rally?

This is the first Hemp Lobby Day in Illinois since the passing of the Industrial Hemp Act in 2019!

Your voice is a powerful tool in ensuring our legislators understand the importance of supporting the hemp industry—a sector leading the charge in sustainable agriculture, driving innovation in agriculture and manufacturing, and bolstering local economies. Now, more than ever, we must share our stories and advocate for hemp, a crop that stands to revolutionize the way we meet our food, fiber, fuel, feed, wellness, and climate challenges of the future.

Make Your Voice Heard

This rally is more than a gathering; it's an opportunity for lawmakers to directly engage with the hemp community. Hear from the people who live and breathe this industry, sharing their authentic experiences and the genuine needs of our community. Your participation is crucial in painting a vivid picture of the hemp industry's potential and its significance to Illinois.

Stand Against Unreasonable Legislation Urge lawmakers to vote no on bills that could severely hamper the growth of the hemp industry. This includes legislation that imposes unreasonable milligram caps, attempts to redefine hemp, creates unnecessary licenses, or aims to ban or criminalize naturally occurring cannabinoids. Such measures ignore Federal law and undermine the efforts of our hardworking Illinois hemp farmers, processors, and business owners. 

Stand FOR

Support for hemp research, innovation, conservation, farmers, businesses, local food, green energy, carbon sequestration, clean soil and water, sustainable AG,

bio-based plastics, textiles, fuels, building materials, local economy, local wellness options and MORE - let us know what YOU stand for!

Does your Representative serve on the House or Senate Agriculture Committee?  

Help us make a significant impact by securing a meeting with your reps and every official listed below (and ones that do not).

You can use our email/phone script, the "find my legislator" and story telling tools via our IL Hemp Lobby Day page. We are here to help you, too - don't hesitate to ask for help.


  • Rep Sonya Harper, Chairperson

  • Rep Lance Yednock, Vice Chair

  • Rep Charles Meier, Republican Spokesperson

  • Rep Sharon Chung

  • Rep Norma Hernandez

  • Rep Tracy Katz Muhl

  • Rep Cyril Nichols

  • Rep Wayne A Rosenthal

  • Rep Dan Swanson

  • Senate: 

  • Sen. Doris Turner, Chair

  • Sen. Patrick J. Joyce, Vice Chair

  • Sen. Laura Ellman

  • Sen. Paul Faraci

  • Sen. Linda Holmes

  • Sen. David Koehler

  • Sen. Meg Loughran Cappel

  • Sen. Karina Villa

  • Sen. Win Stoller, Minority Spokesperson

  • Sen. Neil Anderson

  • Sen. Terri Bryant

  • Sen. Andrew S. Chesney

  • Sen. Sally J. Turner

RSVP here and join us for one or both Lobby Day prep calls on April 4th + 15th.

To wrap this up I want to share a video interview that anyone joining us to rally behind hemp derived THC products, producers, and business owners will find very informative.

Thank you to our Sponsors and a special shout out to Prairie State Hemp for their 3rd year of sponsorship! Thank you PSH Team!


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