Hemp farm

Hemp plants, such as these shown here growing in Malheur County in 2019, are seen more and more around the county since it has become legalized and there is a promise of it becoming an alternative crop.

SALEM — The U.S. Department of Agriculture approved the Oregon Department of Agriculture’s plan to regulate hemp production statewide, according to a news release from the ODA on Thursday. The approval allows the state through ODA to continue as the primary regulator of hemp production in Oregon.

ODA previously operated its Hemp Program using the authorities provided by Oregon Revised Statutes and the 2014 Farm Bill. As of Jan. 1, 2022, hemp production throughout the U.S. must comply with the 2018 federal Farm Bill’s hemp provisions and USDA’s Domestic Hemp Production Program regulations. In addition, state departments of agriculture with USDA-approved plans, such as ODA, must regulate hemp production in accordance with the 2018 federal Farm Bill’s hemp provisions and USDA’s Domestic Hemp Production Program regulations.

The new federal hemp regulations required some adjustments to ODA’s Hemp Program. Notable changes in response to the new federal rules include:

• Each key participant on the grower application must submit a criminal history report to ODA;

• Reporting requirements for the location and acreage of hemp planted;

• The maximum window to collect samples before harvest must be no more than 30 days; and

• Growers must register with the USDA Farm Service Agency;

These changes are in addition to the Oregon Legislatures changes to the State Laws regarding Hemp through House Bill 3000.

A key requirement remains the same: All Oregon hemp growers and handlers must first have their license approved before starting hemp production. Applications to grow hemp are on the ODA Hemp Growers webpage. Additional information about ODA’s Hemp Program, the approved state plan, and the newly adopted rules on the Hemp Laws and Rules webpage.

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