|For the Birds: Hemp seed bust infuriates locals
Janet Wells, Sonoma County Independent, Vol. 21, No.19
Friday, 1 October 1999
Kevin Roth, the executive chef at the Coup Restaurant in New York, says, "Hemp seed-crusted tuna is our best selling dish. To say that we're serving a controlled substance is outlandish.
Pubdate: Sept. 30-Oct. 6, 1999 - Sebastopol-based Nutiva, which brokers and distributors imported hemp products used for a booming consumer market, is reeling from a U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency seizure of a tractor-trailer full of Canadian hemp seed. In addition to the August seizure of sterilized grain on its way to a U.S. Company that sells bird seed blends, the DEA demanded that the Canadian supplier, Kenex, recall previous hemp products or pay more than $500,000 in fines.
Sterilized hemp seed, says Nutiva president John Roulac, is heated
to 212 degrees for at least 15 minutes, so the seeds will not germinate.
"It's a legal product," he says. "The 1937 tax act exempts sterilized [hemp] seed, oil, or meal."
U.S. Customs Department spokesman Dean Boyd says that customs inspectors
in Detroit called the DEA about the hemp seed after looking at the shipment's paperwork, and were instructed to seize the load.