NORTH CAROLINA: The North Carolina Industrial Hemp Commission (NCIHC) is accepting applications for its pilot program to grow industrial hemp for research in North Carolina. The application process is open to farmers who can show evidence of income from a farming operation. With such a high level of interest in growing hemp in North Carolina, Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler said NCIHC worked diligently and quickly to establish temporary rules before the 2017 planting season. “There has been considerable interest in this program, and we expect a good number of farmers to apply for licenses.” To obtain an application, go online click on the application link. There is no deadline to apply for this pilot program.
David Schmitt, COO of Hemp, Inc.’s wholly owned subsidiary, Industrial Hemp Manufacturing, LLC said during an interview with editor Keith Barnes that IHM has already committed to just over 3,000 acres of industrial hemp for the 2017 crop. Schmitt has already signed Letters of Intent with numerous farmers and is expecting to have all contracts for the 2017 growing season finalized within the next 30 days, contingent on the farmers receiving their license from the North Carolina Department of Agriculture.
State agriculture agents will monitor and test the hemp crops to make sure they do not contain more than .30% THC. Industrial hemp growers will have to report each acre to the state and give precise locations using GPS.
In addition to showing evidence of income from a farming operation, applicants are also expected to pay an annual fee, provide a written statement of the research objective, and must provide access for the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Plant Industry Division and law enforcement for sampling in the field or in storage.
Approved applicants will be granted a license that will allow the holder to plant, harvest and market the crop. Individual licenses can be for one year or three years. Applications are currently being reviewed by NCIHC. On Monday of this week, the commission held a conference call to review and approve applications that were received through March 10, 2017.