Former Lieutenant Governor assumes leadership role to shape the future of Florida hemp

TALLAHASSEE, FL, September 19, 2019 – Former Florida Lieutenant Governor Carlos Lopez-Cantera will head the Hemp Industries Association of Florida (HIAF) as its president, as announced by the leading, non-profit trade association dedicated to supporting the commercialization of hemp in the state.

Lopez-Cantera was formally introduced in his new role as president at HIAF’s final Industrial Hemp Road Tour event on September 19 at the Doubletree Hotel in Tallahassee.

HIAF is the official state charter of the national Hemp Industries Association, which has been advocating for fair hemp legislation and cultivating a business-friendly hemp environment for 25 years. In his role as HIAF president, Lopez-Cantera will ensure HIAF continues to be on the forefront of educating key Florida stakeholders and the business community on what is expected to be both a multi-billion dollar and sustainable growth industry in the state.

“I am excited to join the members and team at HIAF, where we will work together to ensure this industry creates opportunities for business, agriculture and all of Florida,” stated Lopez-Cantera. “There is no question that homegrown, Florida hemp will play a major part in strengthening our state’s agricultural and economic vitality. With a welcoming business environment, ideal growing conditions and a talented farmer and entrepreneurial base, Florida is the perfect place to set the pace for such an exciting industry that is quickly taking shape.” Lopez-Cantera added, “Once the regulatory framework is in place, I look forward to introducing hemp as a viable crop on my family’s farm in South Miami-Dade County.”

“We are so pleased to have Carlos at the helm of our HIAF team,” said David Hasenauer, Chairman of the Hemp Industries Association of Florida. “He has been a long-standing voice for enhancing the business and competitive environment in our state, and we are excited for the leadership he will bring to our organization and in driving the hemp industry forward in Florida and nationally.”

Lopez-Cantera served as Florida’s 19th lieutenant governor from 2014 to 2019. He was the first Hispanic to hold the position in the state. He previously served as Majority Leader in the Florida House of Representatives as well as Miami-Dade County’s property appraiser.

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Hemp Industries Association of Florida (HIAF) is the official state charter of the national Hemp Industries Association, which has been fighting for fair hemp legislation for 25 years. The HIAF is a 501(c)(6) non-profit trade association dedicated to cultivating a friendly business environment and supporting the commercialization of hemp for a wide variety of wellness and sustainable alternative products. This includes providing education, training and a reliable network of industry players to make Florida the national leader in the hemp industry. The HIAF will always strive to have a strong voice on Florida’s Capitol Hill to ensure that no part of the industry or its participants go unheard. More information about hemp’s many uses and hemp advocacy may be found at www.hiafl.org. 
  
Hemp Industries Association® (HIA®) is a 501(c)(6), membership-based, non-profit organization that works to advance the hemp economy and educate the market for the benefit of members, the public and the planet. Since its founding in 1994, HIA has worked tirelessly for its 1,600-plus members to expand and protect the sale and marketing of hemp products. The culmination of that work was the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, which officially redefined hemp as an agricultural commodity and removed it from the purview of the Controlled Substances Act, thereby paving the way for a massive expansion of the market and positioning hemp producers to be a global economic force. For more information, visit www.thehia.org.

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