-Identifying key knowledge gaps and expanding participation opportunities in the hemp industry.

-Cannabis Regulation


Guest Speakers Background


Dr. Heather Grab delivers best practices for the cultivation and processing of hemp to professionals in Cornell’s Hemp Science program. Her research uses remote-sensing, large-scale community datasets, and advanced analytical methods to create data-driven solutions for challenges at the interface of natural resource conservation and agriculture. Heather teaches two courses in the Hemp Science curriculum. The first focused on production introduces students to evidence-based practices for hemp cultivation across a range of production systems from broad acre fiber to indoor high cannabinoid. Her second course gives students hands-on experience with processing raw hemp products into a diverse array of high-value products. She also mentors master’s students in the Hemp Science Program on their independent projects ranging from fiber industry market analyses to new analytical methods.


Glenna Colaprete is an adjunct professor in the Horticulture program teaching Regulations in Cannabis Cultivation at FLCC. She holds a B.S and M.S. Criminal Justice, Business and Advanced Certificate in Project Management from the Rochester Institute of Technology. After earning her Master’s Degree, Glenna served as a Distinguished Member of Technical Staff for Verizon Headquarters New Product Engineering. Following her fifth patent, she left her successful engineering career to become a licensed hemp cultivator, processor, and retailer in the Rochester area. Inspired by her own painful disability, she brought the same level of innovation, passion, and care to help others with her natural and locally farmed products. Glenna has received numerous cannabis product, service, and business awards. She generously shares her depth of seed-to-sale knowledge, best practices in starting and running successful businesses, along the regulations and compliance in cannabis cultivation.


Along with her education initiatives, she is responsible for executing professional development programs for high school and college STEM programs. Glenna also serves as the NY Cannabis Growers and Processors Social Equity, Education, and Sustainability committee member. Fostering an educated, sophisticated, knowledgeable, and compliant cannabis supply chain community and ecosystem.


Topic Discussed


Guest Speaker’s Introduction


Dr. Heather Grab, Ph.D. introduced herself and said. I talk a lot about our program at Cornell University where I’m a faculty member in the School of integrative plant science and specifically I have the privilege of working in our new hemp science master’s program. So if you want to learn more information about that I encourage you to please reach out to me by email or to check out all the information that we have online about our program or explore the much broader set of research that our larger research team here at Cornell has conducted but within this education roles, and today’s topic really is education. I’ll focus on my work at Cornell which is teaching courses that focus on the production and processing of hemp. And then also mentoring students that are in our one-year course intensive master’s degree program in the completion of their capstone projects, so students come to us after completing an undergraduate degree, this is a graduate degree course that they are engaged with. And it makes sure that they have a solid foundation in all aspects of the industry, from thinking about market trends and policy and regulation through choosing appropriate genetics for a particular region or for a cultivation style, setting up one of those cultivation or production practices all the way through a finished value-added product at the end. So students have very complete knowledge of hemp systems. And the idea of our program is really to make sure that we have a competent and well-prepared workforce that can go out and help to lead the hemp industry. 


Glenna Colaprete introduced herself and said. professor at Finger Lakes Community College for regulations and cannabis cultivation. I’m also a licensed hemp cultivator for the last three years, and I’m also a licensed retailer and pending GMP certification. So it’s great that I can be vertically integrated on the hemp side. I love it. I love sustainability, their research. I love what Dr. Heather Grab’s doing at Cornell. People don’t always know that Fingerlakes Community College is a very big witness as far as other programs and excited to participate and whatever we can do as far as contributions and such. So we also started a Finger Lakes professional cannabis studies club at Finger Lakes Community College, we’re also expanding the program. It’s currently a cannabis track with matriculated students and certificates and looking to expand it to potentially an ALS degree. But we do a lot of advocacy work, I work with the city of Rochester, and their prep committee with the mayor and city council and help to close the gap with legacy legal operators. And so we are trying diligently to make sure people don’t get left behind. And that we mitigate the war on drugs, social equity, those disproportionately affected and create this cool ecosystem, this sophisticated ecosystem that everyone gets to participate in, and we get to mitigate the vilification of this amazing plant. We have some workshops and incubators coming up, we’d love people to participate. So if that’s something you’re interested in, please let us know. But again, just to iterate, it’s very collaborative with what Heather’s doing and her team and amazing work with her master’s programs, and excited for the new law in New York state. So we’ll see how the provisional licensing rolls out. 


Kayla Heard commented to Glenda Colaprete and she said So it really excites me that you’re working on that community college level, because it gives people this opportunity, who were disproportionately affected by the war on drugs and other economic factors and socioeconomic status, that maybe they’re not ready to go into a master’s program. Maybe they’re not ready for Cornell, but they aspire for that. Maybe they don’t have another option here. So I really love you know, when we had our first meeting with Dr. Heather Grab, this was a big topic that came up was how do and currently, even underprivileged individuals get involved and help to advance themselves into programs that will help advance their own businesses, as entrepreneurs as farmers, and maybe even as educators? I mean, I know I know, many BIPOC individuals who are the most amazing educators, but getting the route to, to, to become an educator, was very difficult for them. So I just want to give you kudos for working in that space and for partnering with somebody like Dr. Heather Grab at Cornell, to make sure that there’s a path to success for people who are ready for it and who want to jump in here.


Glenda Colaprete replied to her and said. Thank you for saying that. Because we did just obtain our research license at Finger Lakes Community College and to point that as an intent, this gap that we saw with there was a barrier to entry people didn’t know where to go, and to your point, a lot of people that were locked up or incarcerated they don’t have The credentials if you will to just walk right into a collegiate setting, or the wherewithal or understanding how to do that how to navigate that process. So we’ve actually gone into the city and created legacy events. Obviously, we protect their anonymity. But we, we bring in lawyers, we bring in legal aid, actually, Senator Kuni attended the last one with his policy advisor. And we took back notes as to how we could mitigate some of the barriers to entries by creating educational programs that business one on one, not just starting it, how to launch how to acquire your license, but how to file an LLC is the biggest question we get, and, what’s the structure? And how could I ascertain capital? And how do I not get run over and another secondary parasitic effect with people coming in and trying to buy their social equity status if you will, and make them a figurehead? So there’s a lot of nuances that we’re trying to support, as well as ancillary businesses that can incorporate sustainability aspects, right? Packaging, how to create a multitude of factors that could stem from this program that people are really excited about. And even if they just want to be a budtender? Like where’s that workforce about development to be that how do I learn to trend it’s really,


Kayla Heard commented and said. Those basic skills that sometimes they don’t have, access to learning those in their community or even in my community that I grew up in, I grew up in a, in a very poor part of rural America, and to learn those skills wasn’t something that was just a natural readily available, you know, option. And so we’ve looked a lot into our underprivileged communities and looked at how we can help them and the financial aspect is always one really hard part of this. And I know that we want to have a very open conversation and Hector, one of our members, has mentioned that a lot of people don’t necessarily have the funds to go to college. So I know with a community college when I first started going to school, I chose a community college so that I could get some of my basic credits out of the way and make it more affordable for me to go to graduate school. So there are programs like the FASFA and things like that. 


She asked a question and said, how does your school help to educate people who don’t understand the affordability or how it can become an option to come in through a community college and utilize these cannabis and hemp programs to make a career that feeds them?


Glenda Colaprete answered and said.


To your point, you know, even something as not, not that it’s simple, but someone that’s taken that Dec pesticide application, we can add that module to incorporate that into cannabis, as well maybe they’re in workforce development programs, such as plumbing, like just add the module, keep it simple, go through the process, but then add a module how to incorporate the lights for, what, you needed a greenhouse, if you will, like, normalize it and just create another industry. So I know the Department of Labor is looking at that. I know that fast track and Rochester, which is a partnership with city rock to serve city councils very involved in this to RMIT, urban entrepreneurship Finger Lakes and then Cornell, and we’re launching the first incubator, March 25, which is an active intention that and to your point about unionization, I did talk to local 338 organization that is they represent the workers of eight of the 10 registered organizations in New York State. They’ve been doing a lot of advocacy work as well as for sounds vilified as people may think about unions per se. But there’s a lot of advocacy to your point, I think it needs to be accessible, it needs to be cost-effective, and then a path a track for people that do want to pursue, more than just one class or one certificate or one cannabis track if you will, and move into more focused research and which is exciting because the plant should be researched more The sustainability is a requirement now of the provisional licensing, there is a social equity mentorship, inclusive requirement as well as sustainability. And so it’s exciting to see what Dr. Heather Grab and her team could do as far as sustainability-focused research. And as they allow more participants to study and mitigate that barrier to entry with just a simple class like a bartending class I think it’s paramount.


Kayla Heard said to Glenda Colaprete we have a lot of professionals on this call. So when I look around we have a lot of people who I would consider educators. How can we support programs that are local community colleges on a community-based level, how can we as educators and leaders in this space really support what you’re doing? And in our local communities with programs like this? Where do we start?


Glenda Colaprete said We have a conversation we just had this week, actually, with administrators in the provost Jonathan has been an amazing champion to invest in creating this cannabis vision that incorporates existing leaders and entrepreneurs. Like even someone that scaled a company or you know, could come in and provide some free business instruction, right? We have a lawyer, we have a Rolodex, as I denote of CD sales, he does best as I’m calling it professionals that can not be so cost-prohibitive, you know, I just talked to a legacy operator yesterday, who’s really trying to bring a pretty sophisticated, extensive network into the compliant legal market, but was just taken, you know, for $15,000, for from someone in California. So some of these parasitic, you know, behaviors could be mitigated by people on this call that get involved and can provide some of these professional services, whether it’s an accountant, whether it’s a lawyer, whether it’s an insurance agent, whether it’s, I’ve reached out to score, I’ve reached out to existing entities that can maybe incorporate into economic development regions, like if you look across New York State, there’s already existing economic development regions, right, you have the Finger Lakes region, you have capital region. So if you work with those leaders, those business leaders like to score mentors, if you will and help normalize the ability to open up the field for people to get whether it’s CBD or hemp licenses or cannabis licenses, that there’s, you know, access to mitigate some of the parasitic, secondary, disproportionately effect that’s going on. Thank you. So I was looking at your Rolodex here if you will. And I know exactly when opportunity, the city of Rochester is launching a Fast Track for cannabis. And it is a workforce development program. And actually, Heather’s going to talk to you about this. So we might as well talk about it now. But I’m the leader of this, she was amazing, she’s an amazing woman that is at that create social equity, an urban entrepreneurship program that would lend well for this model, and that people on here could, you know, lend their subject matter expertise. And again, it doesn’t have to be cannabis. In fact, it’s more important if it’s, you know, business focus and insurance focus, it’s a structure, it’s how to manage, you know, there’s ice issues, right. There are all kinds of federal concerns. So I think it’d be amazing if people on here would like to participate in that I could definitely provide you the info.


Kayla Heard said. How would you like we post it again at the end, but how would you like people to reach out to you if they do want to participate? Is LinkedIn or email the best way?


Glenda Colaprete replied 


Dr. Heather Grab said. Definitely have pathway programs that help students who really want to take their career to the next steps. Some of the best students that we’ve had in our program have come from FLCC through Glenda’s program there, and also from some of our distributed state universities. So there are certain pathways there. But one of the topics that I did want to bring to the table today was also leveraging industry partnerships together. So I think everyone in this industry, no matter why No, we are a global group, as well needs to be answering this question about how we deal with social responsibility and making sure that we are able to broaden participation within the industry. So as someone who’s sitting here speaking to you at a very elite university in New York State, this is something that I think about all the time. And I think we all have different ways that we have engaged but it could be that there are pathways where we can leverage our different skill sets together. So those of you who have deep expertise in some areas, you know, you may want to continue being productive in that area and not necessarily Transition yourself to becoming an educator. But this is what we do here full time. So if we can help to build partnerships that acknowledge all of the skills that industry brings to the table, and potentially also some financial support for students who may be social or economic equity applicants into our programs, I think that’s something that will be a very productive discussion. I’m sure there are also many other ways to support students. And that was one of the topics that I wanted to open for discussion today. So I would encourage anybody who is on the call to offer their ideas for ways that we could go about achieving a result like that. And if they’re, if people need a moment to mull this over, and to think about it, we already have through our program here at Cornell, a very active engagement with industry partners. So one of our partners happens to already be a gha member who is here today. Plus, we have a, you know, a student that we co-mentor together on his capstone project, and he will eventually move on-site to complete his project with classes company, fiber x. So I don’t know the class if you want to speak a little bit about how that partnership has progressed on your side from the industry perspective.


Klaas Eleveld commented and said. 


Thank you, I’ll be happy to. I think it was through GHA, that we initially connected in the field of hemp back in September, October last year. And as we were looking at possible ways to work together and to cooperate, it became apparent that for this program, Cornell that is looking to have their students finish, I think their last year or actually is just a one year doing a what’s called a capstone project, which has a number of guidelines of things that people need to look at, and research for, for most. And Heather actually had had two candidates that we talked to, who showed to be extremely enthusiastic, and already sent us research papers long before it was decided what the scope of the project was going to be. So that enthusiasm came out already. And I’m happy to say that in the course of the last three months, I guess, everything came together. The scope of the project has been decided. And we have scheduled work, which is going to run all the way up until the end of August. And of course, you cannot look into the future but it’s likely that the student in question Williamsville may stick with us for the duration after hours. So we’re extremely happy that that has come together.


Dr. Heather Grab replied and said.


And so I think there is a lot of potential for leveraging those kinds of relationships to train students, and particularly students who are coming from communities that have been impacted by the war on drugs, and to provide a pathway, right into potential employment with, you know, an organization. 


Neil Havermale commented and asked a question and said


It’s quite interesting and quite topical, um, a bit earlier today, there was a USDA briefing about climate-smart commodities. And this particular one is talking about funds from a quarter of a million up to $5 million. 


And my question has to deal with how to form craters either in a junior college and or you know, land grant institution like Cornell such that gha could help us with their membership and their leadership clout, right? To assist in Ghana, gaining these specialized smaller research agendas through creators. And I’d appreciate if you had any insight on that because I’m trying to help gha, Mandy and you know, the gals you know, per you know, make up some sort of process to get a foot in the door on you know, 5 million bucks is not a bad poke in the eye. Right. And GN HAMP really needs some policy visits. It isn’t in my mind in the big picture to get on the table with corn and beans, sorghum rice, etc. 


Dr. Heather Grab said. I will start off and I’ll let Glenda Colaprete then fill in with details from her side. But I know, we are always trying to leverage public-private partnerships that help us to obtain funding for research programs, as well as for educational programs. And since that’s mostly the focus of the discussion today, maybe I will speak more to that. But there are certain programs that help to provide funds for scholarships for, you know, to train students to work in particular areas, or to meet the particular national needs, that it’s certainly very helpful to have these kinds of working relationships already established to be able to have letters of support, and to also have dollar matching funds in some cases that can support those efforts. 


Glenda Colaprete added and said. Thank you for that, because I agree with what you stated, Heather, and, you know, I’m not as versed in the grant process. And I don’t have a lot of patience for that. Sometimes, with just all the effort that goes into it, I’ll tell you, just keeping up with the license compliance feels like a full-time job. And so I would love if there’s support, you know, for a cooperative opportunity, if you will. And if you look at the Cannabis cooperative license, that’s, I know, that’s a big interest for more of an agricultural kind of commodity to your point meal. As you know, setting the price as you do with corn or soy, and that maybe you have 40 growers that work together. And they all, you know, grow in a cooperative fashion. And you, you know, have a median price, if you will, but you leverage that cooperative license. So that’s very interesting. How that will vet out, I would learn that that will be less costly and more inclusive. As far as people that want to get into growing beards only have the money for large canopies. And I’ve seen it with hemp, too, I’ll be it. It’s been pretty restrictive as far as the ability to research until recently for some people. I did want to mention with Hector your comment, which is amazing about what you helped with the SmartStart coalition, and would love to have Western New York and Rochester included, and all the great things that you’ve done downstate, and there are amazing different organizations, I think would be great if we maybe through this organization, brought those parties together. So I think that’s a compelling argument and opportunity because scholarships and, you know, barriers to entry have been real mitigation, there’s a lot of people that I talked to that have experienced that don’t have the right credentials or understanding how to get into some of these educational programs. So I think it’s important to bring in some of the, like, the judicial process commission, for instance, I met within Rochester and, and there’s a reentry program that they use for healthcare certificates for people that have been incarcerated and are getting out and want to get into jobs. And if we leverage, you know, some of those existing processes and incorporate it into hemp, and cannabis, as far as I’m mitigating some of the records, because you’re right, there’s a federal limitation. So I would like to talk to you more about that, and anyone else that’s more hyper-focused on how we can, you know, create a pathway into some of these educational programs. So I’ll pause there. Oh, can I mention one more thing that I go for? Is Bruce Ceylon because I listened to your pre URL presentation, I think it was yesterday on our sustainability discussions in regards to how we could plant, you know, have been in for years that remediate the soil. I would love to see if someone is leading an effort like that for brownfields or, you know, remediation in general. And if there’s a sustainability group, as a sustainability focus group, I know, you know how they’re, you guys do a lot of work on that, but I didn’t know if there was an overarching hand and sustainability. You know, cooperatives,


Kayla Heard commented and said.


To my knowledge. I know that JJ is in the process of putting together a few committees to address some different things, you know, we have a research committee that’s just come together, we have a farming committee that’s come together. So that’s definitely something that we could look at is it’s how we could put in a structure that to where it’s a focus or sustainability committee may be which is like, but what we have done is what Bruce has done, and our group through the carven committee meeting that you saw yesterday, as we’ve put together, really, Bruce Dietzen and Eric and a few other key individuals have put this together. But what we can really do, and we did it in a way where we submitted for the X PRIZE. And so those numbers and the details are really able to be replicated and backed up. So I think what we’re going to do is probably end up utilizing the information from that committee with Bruce Dietzen kind of spearheading what we can do in a carbon solution.


Glenda Colaprete commented and said because that’s a huge right for hemp building as carbon mitigation for net-zero and aligning it with the climate bill, especially in New York. I know that’s a huge concern. In fact, this provisional licensing is not going to include building, it’s only going to include outdoor and greenhouse.


Kayla Heard said. Because if we can prove or as we prove, not, if because we’re there now as we prove what hemp can really do, and the amount of carbon sequestered and then take the delta of whatever we’re replacing. So when you replace a standard build home, you not only have the carbon sequestration from the plant, you’re reducing all the carbon input into the home. So you have a much larger Delta in that variation of how much carbon is being sequestered. And whenever we put that information into a real application, now our farmers have an opportunity to make more money, because carbon credits are a huge topic right now, when it comes to subsidizing our businesses. And if a farmer can sell his carbon credits, that just raises the value of this crop in this industry.


Glenda Colaprete replied and said. I think that’s so compelling because every grower has to have a sustainability program. That’s part of the rule. And it’s the right thing to do anyway. But to your point, there’s so much we can do now. And as research or as licenses are opening up and as becoming more accepted and more prolific


Neil Havermale asked a question and said.


Could you take a moment and try to explain the land grant related to the sorts of Primary Industries?


Dr. Heather Grab replied and said.


And I think that actually is a really great segue to one of the comments that were added the last one that was into the chat there. So land grant universities receive, they know what they’re called the same because they were granted lands often lands that were not willfully given across the US from the people who occupied those lands before they were settled. But those lands were given by the federal government to institutions of higher education, which they were able to either hold and lease those lands or sell them to in order to form an endowment of funds that would support agricultural education programs. Though the mission has since expanded quite a bit and scope for land grant universities, every state across the country has a land grant university, as well as some states that have land grant institutions that are established at minority-serving institutions. So those are specifically 1890 land grant institutions. And Cornell has been actively developing partnerships with those 1890 land grant institutions. So those could be historically black colleges and universities, or primarily Hispanic serving institutions that have that system in place to help to come essentially, to collaborate together in order to be able to conduct research and also to train students together. But all of these land grant entities, whether they’re an 8090, or funded through other means, have an obligation to conduct research that meets the public need, particularly within the agricultural sector. So a huge portion of the research that we work on here at Cornell is research that is meant to answer all these questions of the hemp industry, in particular, so we do things like conducting large scale cultivar trials for grain and fiber and high cannabinoid ham We do this in greenhouses, we look at different process methods, we have active breeding programs here, we are always on the alert for different potential pests or pathogen threats that growers need to be aware of. And not only are we conducting this research, but we have a mandate then to also provide that freedom to the public and to industry members who would like access to that information. So a lot of you know, there was a note in the chat about developing demo fields that farmers can come out to. And certainly, of course, I think there’s a lot of opportunity for, you know, private folks to also engage in those, I think the hemp mine, for those who aren’t familiar with it, and those who are, at least in the US anyway, it is a fantastic example of this. They are a breeding and seed company that also does a very, very large cargo cult of our trials every year, led by Dr. Allison Justice. I believe they are based in North Carolina, and they provide all of these kinds of cultivar trials and have active breeding programs. But here at Cornell, we actually have a public breeding program, which means any of the cultivars that are developed within our breeding program can be licensed broadly to the public. We also have strong relationships with the USDA is hemp germplasm collection, which was established here at the agritech campus of Cornell University, which will provide seeds for the development of new cultivars freely to anyone who would like them. So not just seeds, but also pollen or to their CO options for tissue culture as well. So hopefully that addresses what you were hoping I would say there, Neil, but if there were some other things that you had in mind, please feel free to add them. Okay, good. So yeah, I would also be really curious, given the big diversity of folks who are members of the gha with sometimes very, very deep expertise, I want to acknowledge all the expertise that’s in the Zoom Room here today. But maybe that expertise is somewhat narrow. And hemp is incredibly broad, whether it’s we’re talking about grain production, fiber production, high cannabinoid, or terpene. Production. I know some people are experts in breeding and genetics, some people are experts in environmental control. Some people are experts in post-harvest processing technology. If there are unmet educational needs or things that members would like to see out there, that those who do education work full time, like myself or Glenna, could support or if there are areas where, you know, you think that GHA could be involved in helping to build broader public-facing education programs.


Joanne Hernandez said. If there are unmet educational needs or things that members would like to see out there, that those who do education work full time, like myself or Glenda Colaprete, could support or if there are areas where you think the GHA could be involved in helping to build broader public-facing education programs.


Dr. Heather Grab replied and said.


I discussed with Mandi Lynn Kerr and I think potentially also, some other members who are on the call today have already been roped into the formation of a committee that is focused on education, the scope of that committee is still very much undefined. And I think any participation by folks on the call today or broader members within the DHA would be very much welcome on that committee. And that would help to translate some of the really great things that are happening, for example, in the carbon committee, if we really need the public to more broadly understand what hemp means when it comes to carbon, or, for example, helping to publicize or to inform some of the seat trials that are ongoing with the research side of things. Those are all things that could be tackled by an education committee. But mostly, we’re interested in hearing what members think, what members want, what do they need, and what do they want to do? Because I think there’s so much expertise in the room, that we can all go a lot further for pulling in the same direction and together to agree.


Joanne Hernandez commented and said And if there are any members who are interested in committees, being a member, allows you the opportunity to be nominated. So if you have an interest or if you want to, you know, contribute our Atomy thing to the committee, feel free to reach out to me You can reach out to Heather as well just reach out twice a week. So we know that you have that interest. 


Jackie Smith commented and said. I’m a writer, and I’m really interested in the Education Committee. Because I think we have, we’ve spent a lot of time, I’m speaking to the choir. And we really need to broaden that base. Um, and that, but that’s hard to do. And so we have to, I’d like to talk to some people about what they’ve done attempting to, like get him into traditional construction, or traditional textile, or what they’ve done in order to, in order to make those inroads.


Glenda Colaprete replied and said. 


And I know for myself as far as especially when you’re a CBD grower, you know, to Heather’s point, if you’re studying cannabinoids, or if you’re most interested in the flower, and you have your shake and stems, your biomass and things I know for, for me personally, especially when flour was outlawed in the middle of a harvest, we had to look for other opportunities to what we’re going to do with our hemp, one of which was pallets, you know, for another, some controversy with that too, for a horse for equine pellets, but also for fuel, you know, pelletizing some of your biomass as far as using it for fuel. There’s a big interest in hempcrete. I know there are a couple of companies looking to come into at least New York State with hempcrete one that’s doing some trials in Texas as well. Obviously, there’s an element that they’re shoring it up as far as to be structurally allowed in a building and code and such but as far as being fire retardant, and, you know, pest, retardant. So, I’m really interested if that’s something that maybe the education committee wants to tackle, too, but then, you know, maybe segmenting the different opportunities for the whole plant could be a focus, like a cycle of the plant and what you know, what each piece can be used for, you know, obviously fiber for clothing and rope. And, but I think there’s, it seems like there’s been a lot of momentum, more so around building materials, you know, we’ve reached out to some different construction companies and you know, some different people doing some trials and using hemp and lime, you know, and opportunities to shore it up to make sure it’s structurally sound. I know, there are a couple of hemp houses in the Hudson Valley in New York. But if that is a targeted focus, I think that would be a worthy effort as far as utilizing the whole plant, and that would also lend towards the carbon discussion


Jackie Smith asked Bill Althouse and said. 


Do you have any updates on the ASTM of the building materials?


Bill Althouse replied and said. 


We meet for two hours every week. So we’ve been very, very, very engaged on fiber metrics and specifications and testing standards, trying to create some kind of third-party go between producers and buyers. So that they’re on the same page to make litigation simple, either at met spec or it didn’t. But without a spec, how do you write a contract? So that’s a major effort. Now as that’s for the fiber committee. I’m also on a number of other committees, C 16, which is insulation, which is where the Greek people need to go and have not. So if I wanted to engage in education, I think it’s the education A hemp advocates and producers on what it means to target the market. They’re targeting What do regulatory compliance licensing meeting standards of an industry, you know, to penetrate the construction industry, it’s the construction specifiers that you have to influence if they specify your material, you have a chance to specify it, it’s going to have to, you know, perform better and be cheaper than what they’re specifying now. So you’re up against hempcrete, you’re up against fiberglass, cellulose installations, and other variations. And so, you know, I think the big thing we need for hemp people in education is the nature of the markets we’re targeting, and what it means to be insulation or to be a structural component. You know, a lot of hemp people are, I’m sorry, but they’re a little over-enthusiastic, you know, they are not going to walk the dog and cut the grass. So what can hemp do? And for those things, we’re trying to make products that the people and industries demand to penetrate their markets. But that’s where ASTM is trying to become that middleman.


Glenda Colaprete said. I understand that as a former engineer. I heard the conversation yesterday, do you close them actually have a patent and autonomous vehicles and behavior agents, and I think, if you reverse engineer it, you know, if you look at what’s required, right, right now, as far as zoning and planning and, and, you know, COAs, and your, making sure that it’s, it meets your fire retardant standards, or your installation or your constructability. Right, as far as structurally sound, and then you reverse engineer it, but I would learn, you’re right. I mean, obviously, I can’t, I forgot what you said. I’m not good at these things, but I walk the dog here. But if you think if you hyperfocus it and create subcommittees, maybe, you know, if you have an education committee, or and you have a targeted focus group, right, where you denote exactly what your impedances are, or your challenges are, and you start, you know, reverse engineering it to literally shore up, you know, that that need, I think it’s a worthy effort. I think it’s the right thing to do as far as at least, as far as packaging, I know, in the hemp industry, obviously, we’re looking at mitigating bioplastics, and hemp is a great alternative to that. So I think if you create a targeted focus group, it might be helpful, and maybe you already have. 

Kristin Steen asked a question and said.


I have been trying to advance this industry for at least 10 years. I’m not a farmer. I had architectural training and I’ve been a systems analyst. So I am completely an outsider. As far as the educational and Cornell and everything. I live in Delaware County. Our Cornell extension is mostly 4H and I have had to expand my purview to speak to other Cornell I’ve been following Larry smart for years and years. I’m happy to see that this is a group that’s coming together. So I was feeling pretty alone here in Delaware County. Trying to push this and saying, Okay, well, I think the thing to do is put a guy on a Harley motorcycle that’s made out of hemp with a hemp helmet, you know, with hemp fuel, drive him into town and having tried to set fire to a hemp wall with the fire department standing by and it would make the local news, right, that would be at least one way. So I think I want to volunteer for some kind of educational committee or you know, because what it is is people the consumers don’t know anything, as much as they should. So once we build the market, you know for these products there is a market. There is already an existing market, but they don’t know the expanse of it. Then the farmers who have been burned in New York, right? For the last couple of years, I know a few of them, who spent a lot of money and, you know, didn’t have buyers and the infrastructure wasn’t there. I’ve also been working on a project to try to locate a facility for a processing plant for industrial fiber and heard And then I say, Well, I should just go into a hempcrete block building business, which, you know, so there are so many avenues and I know that the efforts of the efforts are like, split scattered. And for me, it’s like, it’s got to come down to focusing on getting the farmers to grow more. Whatever farmers have done, it’s gonna not be enough, pretty soon, if we really want to build the industry. You need tonnage, you need lots and lots and lots of hemp, you can make all these products and to fulfill the downstream dreams


Kayla Heard commented and said.


One of the main purposes of GHA is, one of our main purposes is to be collaborative in our education efforts. And so we bring people together with experts like Bill who’s a member of ours, clause, and many of our other members who are on here today, you’re members of JJ, for the most part, because they’re here to collaborate and help advance the industry in that way. And they see Bill sees a piece that’s been missing class sees a piece that’s been missing. Jay, you know, Nathan, we all see a piece from a different perspective that’s been missing, but coming together and putting this collaborative effort together, we’re able to make strides instead of steps. So I appreciate those points, you know, of understanding what our needs are in the industry, and then coming together collaboratively to and I feel like sometimes Bill’s like screaming from the rooftops like, Hey, guys, I know what we need to do, and people like to do and just kind of skip away. And that’s okay, you know, we’ll get there. Um, but it really does take this big effort. 


Dr. Heather Grab said. I think there are a couple of points that I just want to offer some specific action items on, which is if there’s anyone in the crowd today, who was not able to unmute and offer their thoughts or support for different ideas, I encourage you to please reach out to me in particular, those who are excited about educational initiatives and building partnerships between institutions of higher education, and industry, particularly helping to build and support pathways for social and economic equity participants to come and participate in these educational programs. Have an experience working with an industry collaborator that they could offer, you know, some really great workforce for folks in the crowd who are hiring.  you’re interested in being an instructor, or lending your expertise, or developing curriculum, especially as to all your points as we develop, you know, different aspects for sustainability and health. And like how they’re stated, if you’re interested in what we’re doing in our tracks, and maybe looking to replicate that and your locales, or your realms or your communities. You know, obviously, there’s the urban aspect that’s directly accessible and mitigates a low cost, as well as, you know, a community college aspect. You know, if you’re interested in any of that, we’re happy to share everything we’ve done. Our best practices, what worked well, what didn’t work well. And, you know, maybe we can collaborate together.

Mandi Kerr
Author: Mandi Kerr