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Editor:

The "Strange but True" segment in The Rim Review of Jan. 24 contained the following statement: "The plant that produces marijuana is useful for many things, including making rope and paper goods. In fact, a single acre of hemp can produce as much paper as four acres of trees."

To use "marijuana" and "hemp" interchangeably is incorrect. The industrial hemp plant is not the same as the marijuana plant though they look similar and come from the same general plant family.

Industrial hemp is indeed extremely versatile and valuable, and could do much to help the environment by replacing dwindling resources and avoiding the use of toxins. Unfortunately, our concern about "drugs" and our apparent inability to distinguish between these two plants has kept it illegal for development in this country.

Fortunately that is not true elsewhere, so perhaps as more information becomes available, it will be accepted for its beneficial uses here also.

Marilyn Decker, Payson

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