Pauline Hanson One Nation Hemp Bill Passes Parliament
Senator HANSON: The Export Control Legislation Amendment (Certification of Narcotic Exports) Bill 17/06/2020 is another example of the commitment One Nation and I made to the Australian people that we would pursue changes in our laws to unwind the stranglehold on the cannabis industry.
I need to pay respect to Senators Cormann and Kitching for their combined efforts to assist me in making this bill pass the parliament. My office reached out to the minister for agriculture, who is also the Deputy Leader of the National Party, David Littleproud. Minister Littleproud originally had no interest in making this bill come before the parliament, even though market standards predict global industry hemp demand is projected to grow from $4.6 billion to $26.6 billion over the next five years. I was listening to Senator Davey’s comment that they’re really interested in growing the agricultural industry in Australia, and again David Littleproud made a comment. The dairy industry is still dying. Over 500 more dairy farmers went last year. So, when it comes to pushing for the agricultural industry, I don’t think Mr Littleproud is up to the job.
Mr Littleproud showed zero interest or foresight into the very real fact that the future hemp industry could very well act as a transition crop for struggling cane farmers in Queensland, including North Queensland, where sugar millers are squeezing them out of the market. When Mr Littleproud refused to deal with this bill in a timely manner, I went to Minister Cormann’s office, and it was he and Senator Kitching—a Labor senator, and I thank her very much—who brought both the Liberal and Labor parties together.
I’ve seen the benefits this crop offers to food, fibre and medicines. I want to acknowledge the countless health- food stores who’ve been pushing the benefits of this crop, but I also want to acknowledge Woolworths, who have recently taken on Australian-made products, including hemp seed and hemp oil. I’m aware of Australian dog food companies who are looking to implement plant based substitutes like hemp, which is high in fibre. I also want to recognise the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics, which operates within Sydney university and whose use of cannabis to treat epilepsy will be recognised tonight with a virtual award for their efforts in assisting the many Australians who suffer these debilitating fits. Researcher Dr Lyndsey Anderson, an American attracted to Australia to work at the Lambert initiative, is being internationally recognised for her work.
We have an enormous way to go in making medicinal cannabis more readily available for patients across this country. But today’s passing of this bill is another shuffle in the right direction in assisting the cannabis industry. I will be encouraging farmers nationwide to get on board with the cannabis industry, and I will be ensuring, after the next Queensland election, that One Nation remove the barriers that have been put in the way of growing hemp as a food and fibre product. I not only welcome the passage of this bill but am very pleased to have instigated the change we’re legislating here today.
Source Parliament of Australia Website 2020