On June 5th, 2018, Marcus Grignon of Hempstead Project Heart presented on the legal landscape and tribal journey of sovereign hemp at the Eastern US Hemp Conference. He covered the history of the Federal Indian policies of the US government and where we are today with tribal issues. The era of self-determination where tribes have the ability to create their own path towards self-sufficiency from government help. Marcus touched base on how hemp can play a vital role in creating thriving economies on reservations as well as provide prosperity to surrounding rural communities. Cohension was the sticking point to having tribal and rural communities work together to build hemp economies.
Three of the biggest tribal hemp projects in the United States currently is the Colville Tribe in Washington State, the White Earth Nation in Minnesota, and the infamous Alex White Plume in South Dakota. Alex is the only tribal member to grow his own hemp crop and sell it to a company, Evo Hemp. Colville Tribe has doubled their acreage this year to 120 acres from 60 last season. The White Earth Nation has been growing hemp now for three years and are looking to what market would best suit them in creating economic viability on the reservation. The conference attendees walked away from the presentation with a beginning understanding of the complex legal framework that is Federal Indian Law and what tribes are participating currently in the hemp industry nationwide.