‘Hostage’ hempseeds prompt cross-state lawsuit

A Colorado hempseed producer is accused of “holding hostage” some 4 million seeds that belong to Exotic Canopy Solutions, a California hemp company.

A lawsuit filed this week against Colorado Hemp Operations LLC and Curnativ Farms LLC says the breeders were hired in January to produce seeds of a CBD-rich cultivar for Exotic Canopy.

But the deal soured after the seeds came in late because of what Exotic Canopy calls “incompetence” by the Colorado producers. The seeds also failed testing for viability and purity, according to the lawsuit.

Still, the California buyer is suing to get the seeds.

Exotic Canopy says the hempseed breeders are now “holding hostage nearly 4 million seeds that rightfully belong to (Exotic Canopy), threatening to sell those seeds unless (Exotic Canopy) pays a price beyond the parties’ bargain.”

Exotic Canopy seeks $3.4 million in damages. The Colorado companies has not yet responded to the claim. A court date has not been set.