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South Dakota’s hemp guidance moves on, awaiting USDA approval

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem. Source: Wikimedia Commons

Although it has been slow to adopt policies that will help its farmers and entrepreneurs profit from the rising industry of hemp cultivation, CBD processing and retail, South Dakota may soon join the ranks of states that have accepted the new crops and products.

States across America have drafted their own plans for the cultivation of industrial hemp, and the federal government has slowly approved of more and more of these over time.

Most recently, the U.S. Department of Agriculture approved Minnesota’s hemp plan on Tuesday. The move would bring Minnesota’s enforcement into line with federal enforcement measures and may help avoid potential jurisdictional disputes and other problems.

South Dakota has been a special case, where Gov. Kristi Noem has struck a hard-line anti-lockdown stance in the face of the coronavirus pandemic for the sake of being pro-business, but has opposed hemp proposals that did not clearly delineate restrictions on the industry.

Noem has previously claimed the introduction of legal industrial hemp would create lead to the adoption of a “cannabis culture” in her state, but the legislature finally managed to pass a bill that would legalize the crops.

Despite the fact that the federal government legalized industrial hemp in 2018, Noem struck down a bill to legalize it at the state level in 2019 before allowing a measure at the very end of the 2020 legislative session after much negotiation, according to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader.

"I am looking forward to working with industrial hemp producers and processors in South Dakota," South Dakota Department of Agriculture industrial hemp program manager Derek Sheifelbein told the Argus Leader.

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