THE cannabis-producing subsidiary of Queensland Bauxite (ASX: QBL) is successfully growing its first winter hemp crop, following the decision earlier in the year to allow consumption of hemp seeds in Australia.
In April, the Forum of Food Regulations (FOFR) approved recommendations to change Australia's food code to allow for hemp seed consumption, a law which is expected to come into effect in November 2017.
To capitalise on the new market, Queensland Bauxite's subsidiary Medical Cannabis Limited (MCL) has successfully germinated a winter crop which will be ready for harvest around the time of legalisation.
Andrew Kavasilas, managing director of Queensland Bauxite and technical director at MCL says the crop is unique, in that hemp is primarily grown during the summer.
"As far as we know, we are the only company doing such winter cropping, we anticipate that the industry at large will come to benefit from the type of work we're doing in the field," says Kavasilas.
"We're impressed with the numerous selected transplants that were grown indoors under our unique licenses and arrangements with the NSW Department of Primary Industries, in climate controlled rooms, and planted outdoors in trial bed for further monitoring as they continue on to full maturity."
Following two decades of cultivation, breeding and selection, now is the opportune time for Kavasilas' company to produce its first low-THC winter hemp crop.
This announcement comes only a few weeks after Kavasilas announced the intention for MCL's independent listing on the ASX.
He confirmed that a prospectus for MCL is being finalised, but no date has yet been given for the IPO.
MCL incubates its crops from a unique cannabis seed bank, and has a license to grow in New South Wales.
Through its 'Vitahemp' brand, MCL's goal is to be a leading supplier in the hemp seed food space both nationally and overseas.
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