State announces open application period for industrial hemp agricultural research program

State announces open application period for industrial hemp agricultural research program

Application period open through Dec. 28, 2018, for research on industrial hemp and growing and processing CBD

New York State today announced an open solicitation for individuals and businesses interested in growing or processing industrial hemp to further grow the industrial hemp industry in New York state. As part of the state’s Industrial Hemp Agricultural Research Pilot Program, the Department of Agriculture and Markets is now accepting applications for growers and processors of industrial hemp.

The Department is also accepting applications for the processing of industrial hemp as it relates to cannabidiol. Applications can focus on research into the benefits and risks of CBD use for wellness purposes and to gauge its effectiveness. Applications related to human and animal food will not be considered at this time.

The applications and additional information, including the Department’s CBD Research Partner Agreement, can be found at agriculture.ny.gov/PI/PIHome.html. The open solicitation ends Dec. 28, 2018.

Any questions must be submitted in writing to industrialhempNYS@agriculture.ny.gov; all answers will be posted on the Department’s website under the FAQ section.

In addition, the Department continues to accept applications on a rolling basis for future research partners in the areas of grain and fiber.

Hemp is a growing commodity for states across the nation, as both the stalk and seed from hemp can be used in the production of a variety of goods, including clothing, building materials, fuel, paper and consumer products. Industrial hemp is defined by .3 percent THC or less and, nationally, industrial hemp products generate nearly $600 million per year in sales. New York has an opportunity to lead industry growth by creating more opportunities for businesses to produce and manufacture the product.

This year, with the addition of more than 100 new research partners, approximately 3,500 acres of New York farmland are approved for industrial hemp research, compared to 2,000 acres in 2017. The state Industrial Hemp Agricultural Research Pilot Program now has more than 29 processors registered.

Governor Andrew Cuomo launched the Industrial Hemp Agricultural Research Pilot Program in 2015, recognizing its potential impact on manufacturing, job creation, and the profitability of farms across New York state. Since then, legislation proposed by the Governor in his 2017 State of the State Address eliminated the cap on the number of sites authorized to grow and research industrial hemp in New York State. The State held its first Industrial Hemp Summit and announced several actions to support the emerging industry in April 2017.

Following on the heels of the Industrial Hemp Summit, the governor signed legislation to solidify the status of industrial hemp as an agricultural commodity under state Agriculture and Markets Law and created a one-stop shop and website to help producers and processors better understand state and federal regulations and requirements.

The State also held an Industrial Hemp Research Forum, announced in the governor’s 2018 State of the State proposal, to establish New York as a national leader in industrial hemp research, production and processing and transform New York’s agricultural economy. It brought together researchers, academics, businesses and processors to develop strategies to advance research throughout the state.

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