News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Thurs. Nov. 26, 2020: Since 2014, Indiana farmers needed a research proposal and university association to apply for a hemp license. Now, the newly approved plan will allow farmers to become independently licensed by the state, opening the door to commercial production and processing of hemp which will benefit both farmers and sellers of CBD hemp flowers.
Indiana Approves Commercial Hemp Licensing
“This plan approval is a huge accomplishment for both farmers and our team. We are looking forward to growing this program and offering more efficient licensing for Hoosier farmers and processing companies,” the seed administrator for the Office of the Indiana State Chemist, Don Robison said in a press release.
While a dozen other states are also currently negotiating commercial hemp licensing plans with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Indiana has become one of the twenty-nine states with approved hemp licensing for commercial businesses.
In early November, the USDA approved hemp licensing proposals for several first nation tribes including Comanche, Seminole, and Apaches, and also approved plans for hemp licensing in five other states.
As a majority of U.S. states move towards full commercial licensing for hemp businesses, Indiana is happy to announce they started accepting hemp cultivation and processing licenses in November for the 2021 growing season.
Indiana Hemp License Application Requirements
If you are a farmer in Indiana interested in applying for a hemp business license there are certain requirements and criteria. The state first offers one general “hemp license” and another for “agricultural hemp seed production.
Unfortunately, however, if you’ve ever been convicted of a drug-related felony or misdemeanor in the previous ten years, you are ineligible for a license. This means that those seemingly most familiar with what was once an illegal plant are now barred from participating in the legal industry.
You’ll also be required to submit your personal address, the hemp business’s address, as well as GPS coordinates, and a legal description of the property used for the hemp operation. Those who intend to cultivate hemp are required to also report the acreage size of the field where the hemp will be grown.
Applicants are also required to submit written consent allowing the state police to conduct a state and national criminal history background check. This also means consenting to aerial inspections, as well as physical inspections to ensure hemp grown and planted meets the legal definition of hemp (less than .3% THC).
The application fees in Indiana for a hemp “handler” or “grower” is $750 each, or $1500 for both, and are non-refundable.
Indiana Hemp Plan
The full Indiana hemp plan as put forth by the state can be read here. While Hoosier farmers may be more accustomed to cultivating crops such as corn and soy, it was only a couple of generations ago that hemp was a cash crop for fiber, nutrition, and medicine.
As farmers consider taking risks to try something new, they also have to find markets for the newly legalized crop. A projected $20 billion market rings nice in the ears, but many farms that just harvested in 2020 are struggling to find a market.