For all its Gold Rush aura, hemp farming may be more like life on the frontier, where everything must be built from the ground up, said advocates of industrial hemp on Thursday. Hemp can require a lot of manual labor to keep weeds under control, it’s hard to find processors for the crop, and marketing networks are rudimentary.
At the same time that the agency opened the gate for farmers across the nation to grow industrial hemp in 2020, the USDA tempered optimism about a new, money-making crop on Tuesday with caution of obstacles for an emerging industry. The hottest hemp product, cannabidiol (CBD), is sold in a gray …
Industrial hemp faces more regulatory and legal hurdles than many other newly hatched industries, says a report from agricultural lender CoBank. While growth in the industry is driven by cannabidiol (CBD), widely available in foods and as a supplement, two other markets hold potential: the fiber and the grain and seed sectors.
The 2018 farm bill legalized the production of industrial hemp and farmers are clearly interested in a potential new cash crop, but many obstacles must be overcome before the industry can take root, said lawmakers and federal regulators on Thursday.
In the absence of federal guidance on the use of pesticides, the nine states that have legalized cannabis for commercial use are building a patchwork of regulatory polices in an effort to ensure that the end product is safe for consumers, reports the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.
For all the buzz about recently legalized industrial hemp, Agriculture Undersecretary Bill Northey expects a slow shift to the crop. "It will be a long time before it is a third crop in a lot of places," he told the North American Agricultural Journalists on Monday. "I think we have a lot to learn in growing the crop yet."
The 2018 farm bill legalized industrial hemp production, but it is likely to be 2020 before the USDA produces the regulatory framework for the new crop, said Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Wednesday.
In a flourish of political pomp, Sen. Mitch McConnell signed the final draft of the farm bill Monday with a hemp pen, grown and made in Kentucky. It wasn’t accidental. The legislation legalizes the production of industrial hemp, a multipurpose, quick-growing plant that farmers in …