Southern Illinois University is busy clearing land to plant a new hemp research field later this spring. It’s part of a new program that is designed to help provide research to the state’s emerging cannabis industry and offer training to students interested in cannabis-related careers.
Researchers at SIU’s colleges of science and agricultural sciences have been planning the programs for years, according to a statement from a university spokesman. Earlier this year, the DEA allowed the university to start work on the five-acre hemp field.
The field will be split into a series of individual test plots with a portion set aside for “interdisciplinary collaboration” between agriculture, plant biology, chemistry, engineering and business students, among others, the statement said.
“We want to create a program to support this emerging industry,” said Karen Midden, interim dean of agricultural sciences. “We’re getting this request and input from stakeholders, who are reaching out to us, telling