Advancing Hemp 2021

May 20, 2021 9:00 am - May 20, 2021 3:30 pm MT | Virtual Event | Register here

Advancing Hemp logo

Hemp is one of the fastest-growing industries in agriculture today. Medicine, superfood, construction material, textile — its applications, and its potential markets, are seemingly endless. But do you have a firm grasp on the techniques and tools you need to develop successful farming systems for growing high-quality hemp? The 2nd annual Advancing Hemp event brings together industry-leading experts and growers who will dive deep into seed selection, soil analysis, crop nutrition, and farming systems. This event is designed for experienced and new hemp growers who want to learn what it takes to increase CBD percentages, boost yields and develop a more profitable, high-quality crop. In addition to providing in-depth insights into the farming practices used by successful hemp growers, the event will offer informative sessions on economic trends as well as the ins and outs of supply chains.


  • 9:00 am: Welcome
  • 9:10 am: Hemp Industry & Business Update: Kristen Nichols, Hemp Industry Daily editor
    Nichols will share hemp and cannabis market trends and USDA data about hemp acreage in the United States.
  • 9:35 am: Selecting the Right Seed and Clones: Raymond French, Motherlode Holdings, Enrichment Systems, Aligned Distributing
    Learn about the advantages and disadvantages of clones vs. seed inputs and an overview of realistic expectations for current hemp genetics regarding cannabinoid production.
  • 10:25 am: Optimizing Plant Nutrition & Soil Health for Hemp: John Kempf, Advancing Eco Agriculture
    Discover how to apply advanced soil health principles to grow healthy, resilient hemp plants.
  • 11:25 am: Break
  • 11:35 am: Hemp Farming Systems: Gary Reding, Cascades Consulting, LLC
    Gain practical techniques inserting hemp into your current crop rotation, cover cropping, companion crops, soil preparation and more.
  • 12:30 pm: Hemp Pest Management: Dr. Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University
    Learn what the most common hemp pests are and how to manage them.
  • 1:30 pm: Hemp Farmer Perspectives Panel: Gary Chavez, Santa Fe Farms; Kyle Bingham, Bingham Family Organics; Josh Gulliver, J and J Organics
  • 2:45 pm: Hemp Consulting Rooms: Find featured presentations suited to your farm’s needs!


We are in the process of finalizing the 2021 speaker line-up. Stay tuned as we update our speaking details here. To be notified by email about new speakers and event details – sign up here.

John Kempf illustration

John Kempf, Advancing Eco Agriculture

John Kempf is a leading crop health consultant and designer of innovative soil and plant management systems. John is co-founder of Ozadia Plant Science and the founder of Advancing Eco Agriculture, a crop nutrition consulting company.

John Kempf grew up on a fruit and vegetable farm in northeastern Ohio and experienced first-hand the challenges faced by crop producers everywhere. He began seeking to understand the underlying causes of disease and insect pressure on crops. Learning from many leaders in the field of crop consulting and plant health, John began building a comprehensive systems-based approach to plant nutrition, solidly based on the sciences of plant physiology, mineral nutrition, and soil microbiology.

John is an internationally-recognized teacher on the topic of biological agriculture and plant immunity.

Gary Reding

Gary Reding, Cascades Consulting, LLC

Gary Reding is a plant and soil health specialist whose 40+ years of agricultural experience started after graduating from Purdue University in 1978 when he owned and operated Langeland Farms, Inc. for 31 years in SE Indiana. He farmed a diversified food-grain, seed and livestock farm which he transitioned from conventional to organic in 2000.

He was a consultant for Advancing Eco Agriculture, LLC (John Kempf) for four years and worked with farms in 10 states and Ontario, Canada. In 2016, he went to Denver, CO to become the Chief Cultivation Officer of a 24,000 sq. ft. marijuana facility that he managed for over two years before becoming an independent consultant.

Gary formed Cascades Consulting, LLC in January 2019 and has been working for many types of farms including marijuana, hemp, fruits/vegetable and grains. He uses sap analysis extensively and has been doing so since the technology came to the USA in 2013. He uses sound science to measure, monitor and adjust all aspects that impact soil and plant health, including the trace elements that are critical to cannabinoid production. Hemp and cannabis are his favorite crops to work with as they respond so well to proper management.

Ray French

Raymond French

Ray has a family history in agriculture and farming.  He is a published author and has travelled around the world working with some of the largest and smallest plant breeders on the planet to bring improvements and innovation to the horticulture and cannabis markets.  His expertise in plant breeding, large scale production, and market leadership for over 16 years helped lead The Home Depot in the US and Canada to year over year growth of their live goods division selling over 1 billion dollars and plants per year. He has managed some of the top ornamental and vegetable producers as well as directed cannabis breeding and production for the last two years.  He was a scoring judge for MMJ for KPMG working on the program for the state of Florida and became the SVP for Front Range Biosciences producing millions of cannabis seeds and clones for both high THC cannabis and hemp markets. He has visited many cannabis farms over the years and managed trial programs and created and produced game changing genetics.  Ray has the experience and understanding on how genetics and input types affect yield and overall results for CEA growers and outdoor farmers.

Ray currently works as COO for Motherlode Holdings which is raising money for large scale marketing and production of food and cannabis crops.  He is part owner of Enrichment Systems which is manufacturing dissolved oxygen nanobubble injectors to improve crop growth and health. Ray is also available for consulting and is a managing director for Aligned Distributing.

Ray will be focusing on the advantages and disadvantages of clones vs. seed inputs and an overview of realistic expectations for current hemp genetics regarding cannabinoid production.

Whitney Cranshaw

Whitney Cranshaw

Dr. Whitney Cranshaw is a Emeritus Professor and Extension Specialist at Colorado State University, responsible for developing pest management programs for vegetables, shade trees, turfgrass and specialty crops, like hemp. He is the author of two books, Pests of the West and Bagging Big Bugs.

Kristen Nichols

Kristen Nichols, Hemp Industry Daily editor

Kristen is a Denver-based reporter for Marijuana Business Daily specializing in the hemp and CBD industries. She also serves as the editor of the Marijuana Business Daily’s sister publication Hemp Industry Daily. Previously, she worked at the Associated Press for nearly 20 years. She started covering the marijuana legalization movement in 2009 – when medical stores started popping up around Denver – and wrote about the state’s first legal hemp harvest. Kristen also covered agriculture and politics in Maryland and her home state of Georgia.

Gary Chavez

Gary Chavez, Santa Fe Farms

Gary Chavez is a farmer and member of the Board of Directors at Santa Fe Farms. Product development, innovation and compliance at Santa Fe Farms are the responsibility of Gary Chavez, who brings academic experience in chemical engineering and clinical bio-science research at New Mexico State University. Gary’s agronomy studies were uniquely specialized with regards to agricultural applications of microalgae.

Kyle Bingham, Bingham Family Organics

Kyle Bingham is a fourth generation farmer in Terry county. He currently works with his family farm, working 2000 acres of certified organic land with experience growing hemp, cotton, peanuts, black eyed peas, and many other niche crops.

Josh Gulliver

Josh Gulliver, J and J Organics

Josh Gulliver owns and operates J and J Organics. He is a creative farmer focused on regenerative, low input methods. After founding one of the first certified organic hemp farms in the country, Josh cofounded SunGold Botanicals, a certified organic CBD and botanical manufacturer. 

Josh has been growing cannabis for over 20 years. With a wide range of skill sets, he brings unique vision and practical applications to maintain the diversification needed in this industry. Today, J and J Organics has defined itself as far more than a hemp farm growing over 20 certified organic botanical and vegetable crops. His passion for cannabis, organics, and farming has helped J and J has become a national leader in the industry among organic hemp producers. 

Josh spends much of his time on a tractor working the fields and making compost while his ideas and vision steer both companies.


This is a virtual event.


Thank you to the 2021 Advancing Hemp Technology Sponsor:

Tainio Biologicals, Inc.

For over 35 years, Tainio Biologicals, Inc. has been a pioneer in regenerative, biological agriculture. With solutions for farmers, gardeners, and product formulators alike, Tainio’s agricultural inoculants help restore balance to microbial populations in the soil for high-yield, nutritionally balanced crops.
Contact: PO Box 19185, Spokane, WA 99219 | 509-747-5471 |

Hemp Virtual Consulting Rooms

Free Event!
May 20th: 2:45pm- 3:45 p.m. MT
(Please note the Mountain Daylight Time zone)
Talk with eco-farming companies at our free Hemp Consulting Hour! Everyone is welcome to participate in this event, no need to have an Advancing Hemp event ticket. We hope you will take advantage of this opportunity to talk live with one or all of our sponsors and soil experts and find solutions for your farm’s soil health and hemp production problems. All you need to do is register for the meeting(s) you want to join and we will send you an email with a link to join the meeting. Feel free to sign up for one or all of the hemp consulting rooms. Read about all of our Hemp Consulting Rooms below!

Learn how mycorrhizal fungi can support hemp cultivation by mitigating crop stress, supporting water and nutrient uptake, and maximizing crop performance.  Mycorrhizae are beneficial soil microorganisms that live in symbiotic relationship with plants’ roots, in a mutually beneficial relationship that dates back hundreds of millions of years.  This session will discuss how to utilize this sustainable technology, explain which mycorrhizal products are effective on hemp, and review application best practices including inoculation timing, nutrient protocols, etc. The presenter will be Blair Busenbark a Mycorrhizal Applications staff member. Sponsored by Mycorrhizal Applications. Register here!

Room 2: Boosting Secondary Metabolites in Cannabis with Fish Hydrolysate

Alex Ganos of Biologic Systems will present on the lessons and successes he has witnessed in boosting secondary metabolites in cannabis with fish hydrolysate. Alex’s company is a long-time consultant and supplier serving cannabis growers in southern Oregon and northern California. Sponsored by Pacific Gro. Register here!

Room 3: Preventing Transplant Shock and Botrytis Bud Rot

Dr. Brecht, PhD Plant Pathologist and cannabis expert, will discuss using biofungicides: Regalia to prevent transplant shock, and Regalia and Stargus to dramatically reduce the incidence of Botrytis bud rot. Matthew Brecht is a cannabis grower, hemp expert and plant pathologist. Sponsored by Marrone Bio. Register here!

Room 4: Biological Farm Management: Using biology to unlock your soil’s full potential

Beneficial soil microbes are key to effective soil nutrient availability and uptake by the plant. Join Certified Crop Advisors Dennis Warnecke and Steve Becker for a discussion about the vitally important, and often overlooked, role of soil biology in a successful growing program. Sponsored by Tainio Bio. Register here!

To get more information about exhibiting or sponsoring this year’s virtual Advancing Hemp event email, or call 970-392-4464.