Georgia: USDA OKs Hemp Plan; License Applications Open March 23

Industrial hemp. Photo: Clemson University

The USDA has approved the Georgia Hemp Plan, which allows the Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA) to begin the process of accepting online applications for hemp grower licenses on March 23.

The hemp grower license is issued by the GDA under the authority of the Georgia Hemp Farming Act, which authorizes cultivation and handling of hemp in Georgia. The initial license fee is $50 per acre intended to be cultivated (up to a maximum fee of $5,000) and is payable once the GDA approves the application.

The hemp grower license application can be completed and submitted online only. Eligible applicants must provide sufficient information that proves that the applicant is qualified for licensing. For a detailed application guide and additional information, visit here or send an email to hemp@agr.georgia.gov.

Georgians interested in processing hemp can now apply for a hemp processing permit. The Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA) requires any person processing or intending to process hemp to hold a valid Hemp Processor Permit before receiving, processing, handling or storing hemp.

The initial fee for a Hemp Processor Permit is $25,000, and the annual renewal fee is currently $10,000 per year. Processors must also obtain a $100,000 surety bond and documentation listed here, where the permit applications may also be accessed.

Georgia permitted processors can process and handle hemp produced by an out-of-state grower if the grower is authorized to produce hemp under a hemp plan approved by the USDA or grower license issued by USDA.




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