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State of the Hemp Industry: Southern Hemp Expo Brings Industry and Supply Chain Together in Nashville

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State of the Hemp Industry: Southern Hemp Expo Brings Industry and Supply Chain Together in Nashville

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State of the Hemp Industry: Southern Hemp Expo Brings Industry and Supply Chain Together in Nashville

Trade show gathers leaders in hemp industry, agriculture and supply chain all under one roof, plans ahead for NoCo Hemp Expo in Colorado Springs, CO, March 29-31, 2023.

Nashville, TN (August 23, 2022) – The 4th annual Southern Hemp Expo (SHE4) brought together the expanding U.S. hemp industry on August 18-20 in Nashville, TN, for the largest hemp trade show and conference in the southeastern US covering the entire supply chain.

The event featured more than 70 speakers on two stages and an expansive expo hall full of exhibitors at The Fairgrounds Nashville. The expo showcased the range of hemp applications — from botanicals to bioplastics, genetics to farm equipment, plant-based protein foods to building materials, guitars, textiles, and much more.

Business & Innovation Conference
Friday’s Business & Innovation Conference on August 19 brought industry leaders together to look at the future of industrial hemp.

“We as an industry need to rethink how we’re going to take hemp from where it is now into the future,” said Morris Beegle, welcoming attendees. The president and co-founder of We Are for Better Alternatives (WAFBA) said the maturing hemp industry has a role to play in helping the Earth.

“We are taking the steps to make a truly robust industry that can change the world,” Beegle said.

Keynote speaker Dr. Charlie Hatcher, Tennessee’s Commissioner of Agriculture, inspired the audience with remarks on his vision for hemp in Tennessee and beyond. “While the future remains uncertain due to regulatory measures and pending legislation, the state of Tennessee continues to support hemp agriculture for economic growth, developing plastic alternatives and much more,” he said.

First Citizens Bank, presenting sponsor of SHE4, led discussions throughout the weekend on the show floor as hemp companies seek legitimate banking relationships to consistently maintain their business operations and finances. Other sponsors for the event included Charleston Hemp CollectivePalmetto Hemp SupplyHigh Rise BeveragesEarthXProGroHarmony and RE Botanicals. For a complete list of SHE4 sponsors, visit here.

Farm & Soil Science Symposium
The Let’s Talk Hemp Farm & Soil Science Symposium on Saturday, August 20, drew interest from agricultural producers all over the south. Attendees learned about the latest innovations in hemp agriculture, including specialty hemp harvesting, planting and processing equipment from Bish EnterprisesFormation Ag and others.

As the hemp industry has matured, especially in the southeast United States, the Southern Hemp Expo created opportunities for attendees to build connections for the future.

Patrick Brown, a 4th generation farmer based in North Carolina, shared his successes with the audience. “While I try to stay in my lane as a farmer, I also understand what it takes to be a good business partner. Producing a quality product is the first step to a successful hemp agriculture business. The hemp from our family farm is now manufactured within our home state of North Carolina, all the way to Montana,” he said.

Renowned author and regenerative hemp farmer Doug Fine led conversations on the importance of regenerative farming, including the carbon cycle, reducing pollution, bioremediation and sustainable agriculture. “A commitment to soil health and regenerative agriculture is essential for the future of hemp. Producing organic and sustainable hemp harvests will promote long term business growth and protect our earth.”

Christie Apple, Soil Health Expert and Agronomist, would double down on the need for regenerative agriculture in the hemp industry. Apple addressed the crowd, stating, “When done properly, regenerative hemp farming can cure our soils and save our planet. The hemp farming community has an opportunity to lead the way in regenerative agriculture and leave behind monoculture and conventional farming.”

Raising the Bar for the Industry
Industry leaders and experts shared their respective messages with industry exhibitors and attendees on the Let’s Talk Hemp Education Stage. 

Dr. Bridget Williams, Board-Certified Physician & Cannabis Educator and CEO of Green Harvest Health, a network of medical cannabis and integrative health clinics located in Ohio, encouraged industry members to focus on what matters most. “I have seen so many companies spend their time on developing their logo and branding before perfecting their product. In the critical early stages of founding a consumer products company, focus your energy on product development and your company mission. Your product quality will ultimately determine your success in the industry, and the branding can follow,” she said.

The Many Uses of Hemp on Display at SHE4
Since the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp has gone in many directions, including fiber, building materials and even guitars, all of which were on display at SHE4.

Global Fiber Processing informed the audience on their equipment, seeds, raw materials, and processing and logistical expertise that farmers and manufacturers need at every point in the American industrial hemp supply chain. Their commitment to hemp fiber processing, along with Fort Benton, MT based IND Hemp, another SHE4 exhibitor, are leading the way in hemp fiber processing in the United States.

HempWood had their wood and construction materials on display for attendees. Their non-toxic hemp composite woods are used in construction, interior design, flooring and furniture.

Silver Mountain Hemp Guitars highlighted the show with their newest hemp made guitars. The sounds of hemp descended on the crowd throughout the weekend through the hemp wood amplifiers and speaker cabinets for attendees to try out when walking the show floor. 

Save the Dates! 9th Annual NoCo Hemp Expo, March 29-31, 2023 in Colorado Springs; 5th Annual Southern Hemp Expo, August 19-21, 2023 in Nashville
Southern Hemp Expo organizers said it’s time to start making plans to attend the company’s flagship hemp trade show, the NoCo Hemp Expo, which is headed to The Broadmoor Resort & Convention Center in Colorado Springs, CO, March 29-31, 2023, for its 9th year.

“As the industry matures, we have even more confidence that the Hemp Revolution and this platform will provide solutions that will restore this planet and bring economic prosperity,” said Morris Beegle, event organizer.

With the conclusion of SHE4, organizers also announced next year’s return to The Fairgrounds Nashville for SHE5, August 19-21, 2023.

About WAFBA and Colorado Hemp Company
We Are For Better Alternatives (WAFBA) is committed to researching and developing better alternatives so that hemp can once again thrive, prosper, and help individuals and communities throughout America and around the globe. The Colorado Hemp Company, the producer of the 4th Annual Southern Hemp Expo, is a leading organization for the advancement and advocacy of hemp farming, processing, production, innovation, education, and legalization in the USA. The entire team is committed to researching and developing alternatives so that hemp can once again thrive and help individuals and communities throughout America and around the globe. 

Contact
Steven Hoffman, Compass Natural, 303.807.1042, steve@compassnaturalmarketing.com
Morris Beegle, Colorado Hemp Company, 970.541.0448, mo@cohempco.com

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