The Northern Territory has awarded its first commercial hemp licence.
It is seen as a milestone in the establishment of an industrial hemp industry in the Territory.
The licence has been awarded to Bees Creek farmer Michael Jakobi who plans to grow the crop in the Douglas-Daly region.
"I applied for a commercial hemp licence because I wanted an alternative to growing hay and because I thought it would be a good rotational fit with some of my crops," he said.
"The fact that hemp is multi-use is very appealing, I am also interested in the possible soil conditioning benefits planting hemp may have for my future crops."
The awarding of the licence will now see the first crop of industrial hemp grown right here in the Territory, opening the door for new jobs, manufacturing and export opportunities for the Territory.
More reading: Industrial hemp grows well in Katherine.
Hemp is a versatile and profitable product which is used for food, fibre, oil, seed and potentially stock feed - and is used in the manufacturing of products like cosmetics, clothing, rope and other building materials.
The establishment of this industry in the Territory has the potential to facilitate further investment and job opportunities, and shows the world, the Territory is open for business.
The Territory has a competitive advantage when growing hemp, with the potential to produce a viable dry season seed crop which can be supplied to the rest of Australia for summer planting.
The awarding comes following the commencement of the Industrial Hemp Act 2019earlier this year.
Agribusiness and Aquaculture Minister Nicole Manison said: "To grow our economy, we need to diversify our economy - and expanding into the exciting sector of industrial hemp does just that.
"Starting an industrial hemp industry here in the Territory brings with it new jobs and new manufacturing and exporting opportunities - the potential is very exciting.
"This is just one example of how the Territory is Australia's comeback capital. We are on the road to recovery, and we are doing it with new industries and more jobs."
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