On October 29, 2019, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a rule establishing the U.S. Domestic Hemp Production Program. States and Indian tribes must submit plans to the agency for approval to regulate hemp production in their areas through this new program. Additionally, the U.S. Domestic Hemp Production Program provides a federal plan for producers in states or territories without their own policies. We have some tips to help you navigate the emerging hemp CBD market.Continue reading
How to Get a License to Grow Hemp
A provision in the 2018 Farm Bill that was recently passed into law removes hemp from Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act, making it a federally legal substance. Industrial hemp is the cannabis sativa plant that has been used extensively throughout history due to the plant’s various uses. Because both hemp and marijuana originate from the genus Cannabis, hemp suffered from the same stigma that surrounds its psychoactive cousin, marijuana. However, hemp has very low levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the chemical that causes marijuana’s psychological effects, or what is often described as a “high.” To remain legal, the hemp product must have a THC content of no more than 0.03%.
Because hemp is touted as a cash crop with over 25,000 applications, it’s easy to see why entrepreneurs are attracted to the many business opportunities in the production of industrial hemp. Many entrepreneurs looking into becoming industrial hemp growers look forward to creating more jobs for their local communities and enjoying the expected high return on investment.
However, while hemp is now legal on a federal level, each state still has its own laws and regulations on hemp cultivation. In this guide, we will discuss the national hemp program and hemp licensing application instructions to become a licensed industrial hemp grower.
Learn About Your State’s Local Hemp Production Program
The Agricultural Marketing Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) was set up to oversee and regulate the national hemp growing program. In October 2019, the USDA officially announced the Domestic Hemp Production Program, which outlined the federal framework allowing state departments of agriculture to submit their plans to produce and regulate the crop.
Before you can grow hemp, you need to be licensed under your state hemp program. Despite hemp being federally legal, some states still have a ban on the commercial growing of hemp; currently, the list of states with no hemp program are Idaho, Mississippi, New Hampshire, and South Dakota. As of writing, forty-six states have an industrial hemp law permitting industrial hemp production.
Because not all states have a hemp production plan, your first step should be to determine if your local department of agriculture has a hemp program approved by the USDA or has submitted one for review. You can find the list of contacts of growers by state at the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA).
NASDA supports the production, processing, and commercialization of hemp and acts as an advisor for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on the regulatory framework for CBD products. Now that hemp is legal on a federal level, so are hemp-derived products, which include CBD products derived from hemp.
Applying for Your State’s Hemp Program
If your state’s hemp production program has been approved by the USDA or is in the process of developing and submitting a plan, you can apply for a license under its industrial hemp program. However, if your state does not have an approved or pending hemp production plan, you could still apply for a USDA hemp production plan. Unfortunately, the application window for licensing closed on November 30, 2019.
There are two ways to apply for a license – electronically through the USDA Domestic Hemp Production Program website or by traditional mail. For states that have approved or pending hemp production plans, the USDA accepts license applications year-round; licenses are valid for one calendar year.
One of the main requirements to apply for licensing to grow hemp is an FBI criminal history report. Hemp production licenses are not granted to applicants who have been convicted of a felony related to a controlled substance in the last decade.
The FBI can provide you with an Identity History Summary, more commonly known as a “rap sheet,” for a fee. If you’ve never been arrested, the FBI will give you a document that proves you do not have an arrest history. The summary lists all arrest information, if any – including the date, the charge, and disposition of the arrest.
There are three ways to submit a request for Identity History Summary – electronically via the FBI website, by traditional mail, or via an FBI-approved channeler. Currently, the cost to request an Identity History Summary is $18, regardless of which option you choose. Processing time for requests for an Identity History Summary is 3-5 days when request is submitted electronically, and 2-4 weeks when the request is submitted via mail. Whichever channel you choose to request an FBI criminal report, you must submit your fingerprints and any relevant data.
The other requirements to apply for licensing to grow or process hemp for industrial and commercial purposes may vary from state to state. However, most grower license and registration applications are the same. You will need to provide the following information on the application form:
Business and contact information – Basic information including the legal names of the applicants, business entity, name of business, business location, and contact numbers and emails.
Hemp field or Greenhouse locations – Location name, county, and the town or municipality of your hemp field or greenhouse location. You may also need to provide its exact location in terms of latitude and longitude. This section also includes the size of the hemp field or greenhouse, likely described in acres.
Applied Research – Applied research refers to industrial hemp research into harvesting techniques, cultivation equipment, nutrient inputs, storage, plant pest control, crop rotation, and so on.
You will also need to pay the applicable fees, which will likely include a grower license fee, an annual grower registration fee, processor registration fee, sampling/testing fee. You may also need to sign the research program agreement, an agreement between the department of agriculture and your state’s hemp pilot program.
ConclusionBecause hemp has been federally legalized, the application process is relatively straightforward. If your state does not have an approved or pending industrial hemp and marijuana program, you can still apply to become a licensed hemp grower via the USDA production plan. However, if your state has a ban on hemp cultivation, it will still be considered illegal for you to grow industrial hemp. Before making any plans, contact your local department of agriculture to better understand your options and business opportunities.
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Whether you’re trying to sell your hemp and lock in a profit before you harvest or you’re looking for supply but you’re not sure where to turn to get the highest quality goods, working with a consulting firm that manages deals and establishes relationships can be the key to your business’s success. So how does hemp brokerage work and how can it impact your growing hemp business?Continue reading
22 Ways Hemp is Used for Commercial and Industrial Products
The cultivation of cannabis sativa or hemp dates as far back as 10,000 years ago. Valued as a fiber source, the weaving of hemp can be traced to the ancient Chinese and Mesopotamians. Researchers believe hemp was brought to Britain from Asia around 800 BC. The earliest mention of hemp dates back to 373 BC, describing how a Celtic princess taught women to sew and weave hemp.
There are records dating back to 800AD that chronicle how hemp was used by Henry VIII’s naval fleet to construct battleships and their components, such as sails, ropes, and rigging. Hemp was even used for their maps and the sailors’ clothes and bibles. Hemp was in such high demand that during Henry VIII’s reign, it was compulsory to cultivate 15 acres of hemp for every 60 acres of land.
When the British colonized the Americas, fields of cannabis sativa fields were grown for the British Crown. Hemp use remained strong over the decades. In 1938, Popular Mechanics magazine published an article about the potential of hemp as the “new billion-dollar crop.”
According to the publication, hemp “can be used to produce more than 25,000 products, ranging from dynamite to Cellophane.” The article was released just a year after the Marijuana Tax Act regulated the cultivation and sale of all varieties of cannabis, including hemp. What followed is the long history of the public’s misidentification of hemp with marijuana.
Modern Hemp Products to Try Today
Today, the uses of hemp have evolved thanks to new methods and technology, a better understanding of hemp’s potential, and the removal of all federal restrictions on the cultivation of industrial hemp. Here are 21 fascinating uses of hemp:
Hemp fibers were first weaved into rope centuries ago. Due to its strength and durability, it is still made today and has evolved into twine and cord that comes in different colors and sizes. It has industrial uses, but it is also popular in craft projects and gardening.
2. Hempseed Oil
Hemp oil comes from pressing hemp seeds. It can be used in body care products like soaps and shampoos, while industrial hemp seed oil can be used in paints, plastics, inks, and lubricants. Because hempseed oil is edible, it can be used in cooking or infused in food and beverages.
Hemp beer is not brewed from hemp directly but is infused with hemp elements such as the meat of the hemp seeds. Similar to hemp beer, hemp vodka is infused with hemp to give it that distinct and unique hemp flavor.
4. Clothing, Shoes, and Accessories
Hemp fabric is super water-absorbent, dyes well, and is incredibly strong. Hemp fabric’s versatility has paved the way for everything from hemp shirts, jackets, pants, scarves, hats, and other clothing accessories such as wallets and bags. It can even be made into shoes and slippers. Because it is a sustainable material, hemp is preferred by eco-friendly consumers.
5. Lip Balm
Hemp lip balm is made with hemp oil, a moisturizing oil that is rich in nutrients and healthy fatty acids.
Hemp is believed to have natural sun protecting properties, making it ideal for infusing hemp seed oil into sunscreen. Hemp seed oil is rich in essential fatty acids, potent antioxidants, and protein.
Because hemp seed oil is touted for its fatty acid profile, it makes a great soap for anti-aging and problematic skin.
Hemp flour is the result of removing hemp oil from the seeds to mill into flour. Hemp flour is a nutty, earthy-flavored flour that is gluten-free.
Hempcrete is a bio-composite material that is used in construction all over the world as a sustainable building material. As a thermodynamic insulator, it helps reduce energy costs. It also continuously absorbs CO2.
Hemp diapers are soft, durable, comfortable, and super absorbent. There are hemp cloth diapers and disposable hemp diapers.
11. Car Bodies
Hemp plastic can be used to build a car’s body. In fact, Henry Ford did it in 1941. Hemp plastic is said to be stronger than steel due to its ability to bend and mend back to its original position, rather than crack and break.
The seeds from cannabis sativa can be used to create viable diesel fuel that can be used in any conventional diesel engine.
13. Hair Care
Hemp shampoo and conditioner contain hemp seed oil containing vitamin E and essential fatty acids. Hair care products infused with hemp are moisturizing, protecting, and strengthening.
Hemp paper is considered superior to regular paper made from trees as it does not yellow or deteriorate over time. Hemp paper can also be recycled more than tree-based paper.
Hemp furniture is made with hemp fabric that feels similar to cotton and canvas. While the fabric can be used mostly to upholster seats and couches, some companies make chairs entirely out of hemp.
16. Pet Toys, Accessories, and Bedding
From dog collars and chew toys to bedding, hemp is used in a variety of pet-related products. Hemp rope makes a great chew toy for dogs because it’s strong, non-toxic, anti-bacterial, and organic.
17. Nail Polish
When infused with hemp oil, hemp-based nail polish can help and rebuild nails thanks to its natural health properties.
18. Protein Powder
Hemp protein powder has less protein content than whey; however, it is more easily digested and boasts essential amino acids. As a high-quality protein, it is great for weight loss due to its high, gut-cleaning fiber content.
Hemp-based supercapacitors are the result of discovering that hemp fibers are more conductive than graphene, the conductor that increases energy density.
Hemp sunglasses are made from hemp fiber composite. They look distinctly eco-friendly and sustainable, making them fashionable for those who want to make a statement about the environment.
21. Aromatherapy Candles
Hemp candles are made with hemp oil and even uses a hemp wick that gives them a longer burn time.
22. CBD Oil
Cannabidiol also known as, CBD, is extracted from the stalks, leaves, and flowers of the hemp plant. It does not produce intoxication, but does claim some medicinal benefits. The benefits range from epileptic seizures to anxiety to inflammation to sleeplessness and more.
Have you heard of other interesting ways hemp is used in 2020? Tell us about it.
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Hemp – The Basics
Hemp is one of the oldest domesticated crops known to humanity. Hemp fiber is extraordinarily strong and its use dates back thousands of years as it was utilized for the production of things like cordage, clothing, and paper.
Additionally, industrial hemp has a long and rich history in the United States. The first drafts of the Declaration of Independence were written on hemp paper. Hemp was a mandatory crop in the early republic, and citizens were required by law to grow it on their homesteads. In 1841, Congress passed a law that ordered the US Navy to purchase hemp from farmers. Hemp has been a staple of American industry since the beginning.
Things took a downturn in the mid-Twentieth century, as hemp was confused with its psychoactive cousins and included on the list of forbidden substances under the Controlled Substances Act. However, it looks like there may be a new hemp revolution brewing that has the potential to radically transform modern industry.
Industrial hemp legalization in the United States is now on the horizon as new bills were recently submitted to the US Senate and House of Representatives. The Hemp Farming Act of 2018 would remove any federal barriers to hemp and legalize its industrial use.
So, why Hemp? It is known as the plant of 10,000 uses, after all, and that’s not far from the truth.
Industrial Hemp is used in the manufacture of thousands of products. The whole stalk can be used to create paper materials and energy products like biofuels. In fact, hemp produces more pulp per acre than timber, so it is a highly sustainable renewable resource. Hemp biodiesel and ethanol/methanol have a proven track record in Europe and the United States as a renewable and cleaner-burning energy source.
The bast fiber of the hemp plant is used to create textiles like clothing, bags, and shoes, technical textiles like cordage and netting, and new-use industrial products like plastics. Henry Ford, for example, built a vehicle out of hemp and other plant fibers that had an impact-resistance 10x stronger than steel.
The hurd, also known as shives or hemp wood, of the hemp plant is used to create building materials like insulation and hempcrete, and also industrial products like animal bedding and chemical absorbent.
Hemp seed is also used in the manufacture of food products like breads, protein powders and flour, milk, and cereal. Hemp oil pressed from the seeds has uses in supplementation, body care products like shampoo, soap, and cosmetics, and technical products like paint, lubricants, and ink.
Hemp can literally replace thousands of products that we use every day.
Additionally, Hemp is now being accepted once again as a medical product because it contains Cannabidiol (CBD) and other vital non-psychoactive cannabinoids necessary for human health. CBD, by itself, has been shown to treat pain, mental illness, anxiety, and insomnia.
Does hemp sound like a wonder plant? With thousands of uses ranging from everyday industrial and household products, to food and medicine, it seems to be the most simple and powerful solution to creating a sustainable, healthy future.
Contact Us from Higher Yields Consulting to get your industrial Hemp Business off the ground.