U.S. retail sales of hemp-based products could exceed $300 million annually, according to industry reports.
Starting in the 2016 growing season, Virginia Tech will begin conducting research on a crop that was part of the very fabric of the Jamestown settlement and may once again become a part of the commonwealth’s agricultural portfolio: hemp.
Following a 2015 state law that allows institutions of higher education to grow industrial hemp for research purposes, the university began researching the manner in which the crop can be grown and assessing the economic impact it could have on the commonwealth.
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For nearly 80 years, the Virginia Tech Soil Testing Laboratory has been providing farmers and homeowners with a wealth of information to help them make the best nutrient management decisions for their properties.
The Soil Testing Laboratory helps clients find the perfect amount and combination of nutrients for their field or lawn by using a system that assesses the types of crops grown, past crop yields, and whether or not the field has a drainage system, among other factors.
If too much of one nutrient is used, the excess can be washed away; if too little is applied, the crops or turf may not grow as well. When a lawn or field is treated correctly, the environment is less likely to experience runoff and people spend less money on fertilizer.
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