Michigan has established new emergency rules for testing standards of the state’s first industrial hemp crop.
“This is an exciting next step for the growth of our newest agricultural crop, and with harvest coming up, we needed to provide clear direction for Michigan’s industrial hemp growers,” says Gary McDowell, director of the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. “These temporary rules help ensure our growers’ first crop meets the standards and requirements outlined in the Industrial Hemp Research and Development Act.”
Since the launch of Michigan’s industrial hemp pilot program for the 2019 planting season, MDARD has processed 541 hemp-grower registrations across the state, covering 32,243 acres. In addition, 389 processor-handler licenses have been issued.
The new rules will be in place for up to six months and may be extended once for an additional six-month period, if needed. They establish proper sampling and analytical testing methods for measuring the concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in industrial hemp to ensure levels do not exceed 0.3% on a dry weight basis.
“With these rules in place for six months, we have time for our growers to move forward while we wait for federal standards,” McDowell says. “The U.S. Department of Agriculture is expected to issue federal guidance and requirements later this fall to help better shape a long-term statewide industrial hemp plan.”
A link to the rules, sampling procedures and other information about Michigan’s industrial hemp pilot program can be found at michigan.gov/industrialhemp.