Louisiana hemp growers affected by USDA’s final rule regulating production in the U.S.

Louisiana

A picture taken on June 5, 2019 shows a female cannabis plant in a grow room at the “Hemp Embassy” store in Milan, one of the first shops in Italy dedicated to cannabis. (MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP via Getty Images)

BATON ROUGE, La. — Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain, D.V.M., announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has published the final rule regulating the production of industrial hemp in the United States.

The final rule establishes how states should proceed with regulations for the hemp industry.  The modifications to the interim rule were made following public comments regarding lessons learned during the 2020 growing season.

“The final rule will impact Louisiana hemp growers. However, it will require changes in the law and regulations at the state level, which takes time,” said Strain. “The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry will work with the legislature during the 2021 legislative session to align Louisiana’s hemp law with the final rule.” said Strain.

Some of the changes Louisiana hemp growers can expect include:

  • Licensing requirements
  • The deadline to harvest hemp once the official THC sample is collected and analyzed extended from 15 to 30 days
  • Procedures for sampling the THC concentration levels for hemp
  • Procedures for disposal and remediation of non-compliant plants
  • Compliance provisions
  • Procedures for handling violations

Currently, Louisiana has 95 industrial hemp licensees. The final rule is available for viewing in the Federal Register and will be effective on March 22, 2021.

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