The end is near for the North Carolina hemp pilot program

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For some time, North Carolina hemp growers and growers have questioned the fate of our pilot hemp cultivation program, authorized and passed under the 2014 Farm Bill, and on the impact of the eventual end of this program on their culture. efforts. We now have answers.

The North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (“Department”) and the North Carolina Industrial Hemp Commission (“Commission”) have announced that North Carolina will soon end its pilot program on hemp.

The Department has formally notified the United States Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) of this intention.

As of January 1, 2022, all hemp production within the borders of North Carolina must be USDA compliant Final rule for establishing a national hemp production program (“USDA rule”). This means that anyone cultivating, cultivating, or harvesting hemp in North Carolina as of January 1, 2022 must hold a USDA-issued hemp license to continue to operate legally. Producer licenses issued in North Carolina will no longer be valid once this program change takes effect. Producers and farmers can apply to the USDA for a license issued by the federal government, effective immediately, and can begin operating under the USDA rule upon receipt of this license. More information on the licensing process, requirements and qualifications can be found on USDA Hemp Production website.

Does all of this sound unnecessarily confusing? It can be. So a word of warning: Any farmer or grower who intends to plant hemp on or after January 1, 2022, and any farmer or grower who already has plants in the soil on that date, should give due consideration to these issues and make sure to timely obtain a USDA producer license. Failure to be, and remain, properly licensed for hemp production at all times could result in violations, fines, and potentially significant costs.

We encourage anyone considering hemp cultivation – or other hemp-related business activities – to consult a lawyer before investing a lot of time and money. Ward and Smith’s hemp law practice team can advise you as you deal with these and other complex legal issues.


© 2021 Ward and Smith, PA For more information on the issues described above, please contact Tyler J. Russell or Allen N. Trask, III.

This article is not intended to give, and should not be relied upon, legal advice in any particular circumstance or fact. No action should be taken based on the information in this article without obtaining the advice of a lawyer.

We are your established legal network with offices in Asheville, Greenville, New Bern, Raleigh and Wilmington, NC.


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