The newspaper goes on to say.

Last Sunday the law in Australia officially changed, allowing hemp products including the seed to be consumed legally as a food.

It is a major breakthrough for Tasmanian farmers who have been battling for decades to change the law.

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This season 500ha of the crop will be planted in anticipation of growing demand for seed products.

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Hemp Association of Tasmania president Tim Schmidt said it was also encouraging to see the amount of research into hemp production currently being conducted.

The Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture is heading up a research project aimed at boosting crop yields.

Part of this will involve developing new high-yielding varieties which will perform well under Tasmanian growing conditions.

TIA researcher Mark Boersma, who is involved with the project, said current yields averaged about 1.6 tonnes of seed a hectare.

Mr Boersma said while the gross margins of the hemp seed made it competitive with other crops including peas and wheat, developing value-adding opportunities for the seed would be the key to growing the industry.

“The challenge for hemp as an industry is how do we create value and capture that in Tasmania,” he said.

Over the past 18 months there has been around $2 million invested in the hemp industry in Tasmania.

This includes two dehulling facilities, increased drying and grading infrastructure, oil processing facility and funding for crop research.