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Grass Could Mean Green For California Farmers

(CBS 13) SACRAMENTO Hemp is a crop that could be a real California
contender. Right now a bill that would allow California farmers to
grow hemp legally is waiting for the governor's signature.

You can find hemp products at any natural foods store but we all know
it doesn't come cheap. A bag of hemp seeds goes for $15, but a bill
that's waiting for the Governor's approval could bring the price on
these hemp products down.

Hemp is one of the most diverse crops but it gets a bad rap because
of its illegal counterpart, marijuana.

"I'm not pro drugs, but I am pro-environment," said Erika Alan, shopper

Erika Alan is shopping at Old Sacramento's Hemp In The Heartland with
her 14-year-old son who wants to buy a t-shirt. She believes buying
hemp products is more environmentally friendly even if it costs more.

"With the price, it's like buying organic fruit. Me and my
environment," said Alan.

State lawmakers narrowly passed a bill this week to allow California
farmers to tap into the $270 million hemp industry. It would allow
farmers to produce hemp oil, seed and fiber-- the raw materials that
are used in hemp products.

"If we can grow industrial hemp in the U.S. it really cuts costs on
food and body care products. Hemp seed is really high in protein and
vitamin e," said Kyle Pulliam, Hemp In The Heartland .

Many natural food shoppers we spoke with say anything that would
encourage the already growing hemp industry is a good thing.

"I really like hemp products. Be a healthy thing if prices come
down," said Steve Jenkins, who is pro-hemp.

Hemp and marijuana are very different. Hemp looks like bamboo shoots,
reaching heights of 16 feet tall, while marijuana plants are bushy
and grow up to six feet tall. Experts add you really can't get high
on hemp.

A lot of hemp products are made in Canada. Right now, raw hemp is
imported from about 30 countries.