Across America, hemp farmers face a series of setbacks

Across America, hemp farmers face a series of setbacks

The hemp growing market has exploded in recent years, but it hasn’t been free of hurdles and setbacks.

Much of this inconvenience has been state-level reactions to the federal legalization of industrial hemp back in 2018, but it also arises from natural concerns by legislators, law enforcement and agricultural lobbies interested selecting clear rules before proceeding into the promising — if untested — waters of hemp cultivation.

Recently, new developments on events covered here at the Nothing But Hemp blog shed light on some of hard problems in hemp.

Multiple reports seem to indicate that bans on smokeable hemp in both Indiana and Texas have delayed some substantial gains in the potential for moneymaking in the CBD trade.

The choices in both states were made to help police who struggled to differentiate illegal marijuana flower and legal hemp flower.

While there was an initial challenge in Indiana, an appeals court has upheld the ban. Now, many farmers can’t make money from growing and selling raw hemp flower, but some are still happy with the law, High Times reports.

“We are pleased that the appeals court upheld Indiana’s criminal prohibition on the manufacture and possession of smokable hemp,” Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill said in a release, according to High Times. “The court has rightly recognized Indiana’s authority to enforce this law.”

Not every state has been reactive and hostile toward hemp planting. Some are scrambling as fast as they can to draft comprehensive state guidance that fits the moods and liking of regulators at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

While Minnesota, South Dakota and a host of other states across American have sent their hemp regulation plans to the USDA hoping for approval, Colorado hoped to gain approval for its own plan as one of the states that has long been in at the cutting edge for cannabis industry.

The Denver Gazette reports that Colorado has nearly 90,000 acres of farmland and over 16 million square feet of indoor processing space dedicated to hemp, hemp oil and CBD production.

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis signed the plan into law in June hoping the USDA would sign off on it quickly, but the newest reports from the Colorado cannabis journal Westword show the USDA has sent the plan back for revisions.

"The Colorado state hemp plan has not been rejected. USDA has reviewed the draft Colorado hemp plan, provided edits and is continuing to work with Colorado state officials,” a USDA official told Westword.