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Hemp Farm's Odor Has Some Moriches Residents Smelling Trouble

Moriches, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) - A funny smell in the air has some Long Island residents complaining.

People say the smell of marijuana is overwhelming their yards.

Folks in one Moriches neighborhood loved the open space of nearby fields, until some say a farmer started growing hemp.

"It smells like a skunk," said Moriches resident Steven Colaianni. "We thought it was one of our friendly neighbors taking a couple of puffs."

"You don't want to come out here and smell that morning, noon and night. And I'm not against it. I just don't want to smell marijuana all the time," one Moriches resident added.

But beauty's in the nose of the beholder, reported CBS2's Carolyn Gusoff.

"To all of us its absolutely beautiful," said Ryan Andoos of Route 27 Hemp Yard.

The folks who operate Route 27 Hemp Yard embrace the seasonal smell.

"It's a very florally, citrus-y, pine-like smell," said Liz Ingalls of Route 27 Hemp Yard.

They aren't growing marijuana. Hemp is a different plant with only trace amounts of THC. Its oil makes CBD products they say do a lot of good.

"If you're going to have any type of headache, it will help with that. Any type of inflammation," Ingalls said.

And that potent smell lasts only a couple of months a year, when the flowers mature.

"I think this crop is much better than some other things that can be farmed, such as cow or chicks or ducks. Yes, there is a slight odor, but its only for two months out of the year," said Andoos.

Neighbors say it belongs elsewhere.

"We didn't have any advance notice that they were going to come into this community," Colaianni said.

Hemp farms are all licensed by New York state. This is one of nearly 600 authorized CBS growers and processors.

The hemp season is just about over. The crop being harvested for use in a products that treat a wide range of ailments, but there is no treatment for the aroma. That will be back next July.

Hemp is also allowed to be burned on land where it is grown. The owners of Route 27 Hemp Yard said burning only takes place once a year.

Residents can call the DEC at (631) 444-0205 to report when the burning is happening.

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