Industrial hemp is a Cannabis sativa plant with less than 0.3 percent of THC, which is the psychoactive chemical that at a higher level defines marijuana. Hemp has been cultivated for more than 10,000 years as a fiber and grain crop. Modern hemp production could be used for fiber, building materials, forages to feed cattle, food products for people, and oil extraction for CBD. Following the passage of the 2014 farm bill, hemp growing became allowed under certain circumstances by research institutions and state departments of agriculture. The 2018 farm bill removed prohibitions on industrial hemp in place since 1937, and authorized states to create hemp programs beyond the university research setting.The University of Florida has been authorized by Florida State Statute, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Rule, and UF Board of Trustees approval to execute the Industrial Hemp Pilot Project. UF is committed to operating under the limitations of the current rules and regulations.
In early May of this year the Florida Legislature approved a bill that allows the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to create a state hemp program. Under the bill, FDACS will submit a the plan to USDA and apply for primary regulatory authority over the production of hemp. The plan has to include testing procedures, certification methods, inspection plans and corrective actions for farmers who may be in violation. Once the plan has been accepted by USDA and rulemaking in place, Florida farmers will be able to apply for permits that will allow them to plant industrial hemp.
This seminar is for people interested in learning more about:
Understanding industrial hemp vs. marijuana
Status of new “hemp” state legislation and new rule-making from USDA
Potential markets for hemp plant products
Purpose, approvals, and current efforts of the UF/IFAS Industrial Hemp Pilot Project
How to stay engaged and learn from UF/IFAS pilot project and other research efforts nationwide