Political candidate Mark McGuire says hemp should be cultivated on Sunshine Coast caneland.
Political candidate Mark McGuire says hemp should be cultivated on Sunshine Coast caneland. Warren Lynam

New player in Fisher says Coast should become hemp capital

A NEW political hopeful for Peter Slipper's seat has a plan to save the Sunshine Coast caneland and generate more jobs for the region - plant hemp.

The Australian Independents' candidate for Fisher, Mark Maguire, says he hopes the commercial cultivation of hemp for manufacturing purposes will get the green light.

"We no longer have sugarcane," Mr Maguire said. "Hemp is a sustainable industry. It can grow where sugarcane grows and provide longevity of employment."

Mr Maguire admits he has "only done a little bit of research" on hemp production and is hoping to poll the Sunshine Coast to get its view on whether it is a desirable solution.

But his party leader, Patricia Petersen, has been walking Gympie Terrace in Noosaville, gauging reaction.

Dr Petersen said she had polled some 500 people and "87% said yes".

"The question posed was along the lines of, 'If the drug component of hemp is absent, would you be for the commercial cultivation of hemp?'," Dr Petersen said.

"Only a few people said 'no'."

Dr Petersen said Mr Maguire had brought the idea of hemp cultivation to the table and the party had researched it and "thought it would be good for the Sunshine Coast".

>> ABOUT HEMP

  • Hemp is the common name for plants of the genus cannabis, although it usually refers to the industrial (non-drug) component
  • It is estimated to have more than 25,000 uses
  • All schoolbooks were made from hemp or flax paper until the 1880s
  • George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and other founding fathers grew hemp

Would you support growing hemp without the drug component on the Sunshine Coast?

This poll ended on 15 June 2013.

Current Results

Yes

89%

No

6%

Not sure

3%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.



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