What should hemp fans and farmers think of slow sales?

What should hemp fans and farmers think of slow sales?

With last year’s groundbreaking harvest of hemp products after decades of prohibition against the crop, many in the industry hoped the efforts would convert to a windfall of sales.

Unfortunately, many farmers have so far struggled to offload their hemp inventories.

According to reports, large inventories of industrial hemp have gone unsold and those that have moved have done so at deep discounts.

According to Wichita ABC affiliate KAKE, Kansas farmers felt the lackluster along with others across the country, but hold out hope that the CBD industry is just beginning to make its foothold in the American market. [1]

CBD oil and related products are one of the main modern uses of industrial hemp. CBD is a cannabinoid that people use for a variety of ailments, including anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain and forms of epilepsy.

“I think it’s very promising.” Hemp farmer Melissa Nelson told KAKE. “I think the CBD is here and now, but Kansas, because it’s already set up for large-scale farming – the fiber and the seed industry – that’s going to thrive.” [1]

According to Green Bay NBC affiliate NBC 26, the Wisconsin Dept. of Agriculture reported as much as 94% of the state’s hemp crops went unsold in 2020. [2]

“There really isn't a true infrastructure for hemp currently. There is no grain elevator where you can go and just sell your hemp. Each grower has to find their own buyer and that's proven to be pretty challenging,” University of Wisconsin Agriculture Educator Liz Binversie told NBC 26. [2]

A Gallup poll from the summer of 2019 showed that just 14% of Americans had tried CBD, so there is still hope for those in the industry that as the compound becomes more widespread throughout the public consciousness these types of market false starts will become less and less common. [4]

Another possible avenue for development with industrial hemp would be a shift toward its textile, bioplastics and construction uses.

The crop was long used in shipbuilding and clothing manufacturer before the advent of CBD, and if more distribution and manufacturing resources were dedicated toward these ventures, the markets could better find uses for the existing hauls of hemp.

“[L]arge volumes of biomass remain unsold,” Barron’s cited from New Leaf’s Hemp Benchmarks, “suggesting that further price erosion is possible.” [3]


[1] http://www.kake.com/story/41664335/farmers-optimistic-about-future-of-hemp-despite-rough-start

[2] https://www.nbc26.com/news/local-news/dept-of-agriculture-claims-94-of-the-states-hemp-hasnt-sold

[3] https://www.barrons.com/articles/hemp-cbd-demand-is-poor-prices-are-falling-in-a-blow-to-farmers-51580482811

[4] https://news.gallup.com/poll/263147/americans-say-cbd-products.aspx