28 Nov American Hemp Oil
At HempMeds®, we’re often asked why we import our hemp – instead of sourcing it from here in the U.S. This is a complicated question and one we’ve put a lot of thought into. There are a number of important factors guiding our choice to source our hemp from Europe, including hemp’s legal status in the states, and the experience and quality of European cultivators.
Hemp In The U.S.A.
For some reason, hemp still stirs up controversy in America. Questions, scrutiny, and gray lines abound concerning the legality of the cannabis plant depending on your geographic location.
When it comes to growing hemp as a crop, rules vary from state to state and continue to change as new laws are passed or updated. There are currently thirteen states with statutes establishing commercial industrial hemp programs. This means that the following 14 (Kentucky gets grandfathered in from previous approval) states can legally grow and process industrial hemp and hemp seeds:
- North Dakota
- South Carolina
- North Carolina
- West Virginia
While seven (7) other states have also passed laws establishing industrial hemp programs, they are limited to agricultural or academic research purposes only.
Other Legality Issues of Hemp And Marijuana
Of the 14 states mentioned above, only four states and the District of Columbia have legalized the use of recreational marijuana. There are also another 19 other states, plus D.C., currently legalizing cannabis use in other forms, such as medical marijuana and industrial hemp, which have different legalities. As you can see, these layer upon layers of approvals and exceptions make things quite confusing for the overall status of American hemp.
California, for instance, requires industrial hemp growers to be registered with the state and prohibits the possession of resin and certain parts of the hemp plant, according to the California Industrial Hemp Farming Act. The Hemp Act conditionally permits the growth and cultivation of industrial hemp in California and limits those who may grow or cultivate industrial hemp into two kinds of entities: educational institutions, and state agriculture departments.
Meanwhile, the state of Colorado permits growing and possession of industrial hemp by registered persons for commercial, research, and developmental purposes. The state is also working on establishing industrial hemp registration and hemp seed certification programs.
American Hemp Growers Will Get There–Eventually
Legalizing industrial hemp, after being banned for 80 years, still has a rough road ahead. While the federal government continues to classify hemp as an illegal drug, it does allow hemp to be grown within the guidelines of state specific laws, but only for select purposes under registered persons.
Making more hoops to jump through and navigating constantly changing laws is not helping the U.S. hemp grower, that’s for sure. They simply don’t have the experience to compete with the well-established, international big boys of hemp growing.
Why We Go Euro
Unlike domestic hemp growers, who only have a few years of experience growing hemp seeds bred to thrive in the climates and soils of other countries, cultivators in Europe have been growing hemp for generations. Countries in the EU are among some of the largest producers of hemp in the world, such as the Netherlands, Austria, Germany, and France. These places rank among some of the largest hemp producers in the world.
Superior Quality of Our Hemp
Our non-GMO hemp seeds were specially chosen from among 3000 possible hemp cultivars because they thrive in our farms’ microclimates and produce the ideal ratio of cannabinoids for our award-winning products.
Our hemp is grown free of herbicides, pesticides, and chemical fertilizers to protect our customers from any residual contamination, making our hemp oil products as safe as they can be. To ensure the integrity of our products, we hold all our products to our strict Triple Lab Tested™ standard, requiring our hemp oil to be lab quality tested at three points in the manufacturing process.
Other Hemp Options
That being said, the VAST majority of all raw and processed hemp stalk being used to make mainstream “CBD-dominant” hemp products to be sold online in America right now is imported from China. Here’s some info on China and some other major hemp producers from around the globe:
The planet’s leading cultivator, China has never banned industrial hemp. They produce approximately 44,000 metric tons of hemp annually and is number two in hemp-seed production, accounting for 38 percent of the global total. China also leads in producing and exporting hemp textiles and related products. It’s the primary supplier of hemp products to the United States.
The French are the frontrunners in hemp-seed production, accounting for a whopping 59 percent of the global total. France also produces the lion’s share of Europe’s pulp and paper, the most important hemp market in the EU, accounting for over 50 percent of fiber applications.
South America’s most prodigious producer of hemp, Chile also sets the pace by hosting the continent’s largest hemp trade fair. Chilean hemp production measures about 4,385 tons annually, and the nation ranks as the world’s third-most-important producer of hemp seed.
Second, only to China in worldwide hemp-fiber production, South Korea produces 14,000 tons of hemp annually. Hemp originated in Asia, and its versatility allows it to grow both upland and in paddy fields. However, regulations have hindered the expansion of hemp agriculture in South Korea, which is fueling a domestic demand for hemp seed and fiber from countries like Canada.
It shouldn’t be too mind-blowing to discover that Holland, the land of cannabis coffee shops, also happens to be among the EU leaders in hemp production. Hemp output here has risen dramatically, to 6,614 tons annually. However, there’s concern that insufficient cropland will limit output, so Dutch companies like HempFlax have begun farming operations in Romania.
In 1994, Canada began issuing hemp research licenses. In March 1998, Canada allowed commercial production of the crop under a licensing system.
As with many new crops, there has been a considerable fluctuation of production acreage. In 2003, over 2700 hectares (6700 acres) were grown across Canada, mostly concentrated on the Prairies. In 2015 over 84,000 acres approved for cultivation.
The Future Of Hemp In The U.S.
Hemp is experiencing a resurgence in recent years in America, with the number of acres planted increasing each season. HempMeds® will continue to evaluate the many political, economic, and logistic factors involved in our decision to source our hemp from European growers.