In this 2014 photo provided by the University of Mississippi, Dr. Suman Chandra inspects marijuana plants growing at the Ole Miss medicinal gardens in University, Miss. The plants are used for research under a contract from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The planned NIDA grow for 2019 will be divided between high THC and high CBD varieties with “recent interest (in CBD) as a potential medicine for a number of medical conditions,” NIDA said. (Robert Jordan/University of Mississippi via AP)

US growing largest crop of marijuana for research in 5 years

July 11, 2019 - 5:53 pm

The U.S. government is growing the largest crop of research marijuana in five years, responding to interest in varieties with high levels of THC and CBD.

The government is the only source of pot for nearly all research, while it still considers it illegal and dangerous.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse said Thursday that scientists have asked for weed that more closely matches what's sold in states that have legalized medical or recreational marijuana. The agency says it plans to grow 2,000 kilograms, or 4,409 pounds, this year at the University of Mississippi. The school holds the only federal contract for producing marijuana. That's enough for 5 million joints, although the government provides marijuana in different forms.

The crop will be divided between high THC and high CBD varieties.

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