Missouri’s hemp law authorizes seed development from ‘wild cannabis’

Missouri has become the first state to specifically authorize hemp production from wild cannabis and the 40th overall state to authorize hemp production.

Missouri’s industry-friendly law also stipulates that hemp can be added to food, a hedge against possible interference from federal drug authorities against foods infused with CBD. Colorado approved a similar law last month.

Missouri’s new hemp law gives the industry an innovative way to develop seed cultivars without importing them.

Republican Gov. Eric Greitens signed the law Friday, hours before resigning his office rather than face impeachment for an extramarital affair and a donor scandal.

Missouri’s new hemp law:

  • Does not require hemp growers to use certified seeds.
  • Allows the Missouri Crop Improvement Association to “collect seeds from wild cannabis plants,” first-of-its-kind language in a state law to account for so-called “ditch weed” already growing throughout Missouri.
  • Still allows farmers to import seeds from other states or countries if they wish.
  • Limits THC content to 0.3%.
  • Requires hemp growers to devote 10-40 acres to hemp if total statewide hemp acreage exceeds 2,000.
  • States that hemp can’t be considered an “adulterant” when added to food.
  • Requires state agriculture regulators to “explore the option of transporting samples from Missouri to contiguous states” for the purpose of testing for pesticides.
  • Allows unlicensed hemp growers to keep their plants if they pay a $500 fine and apply for a hemp license within 30 days.