Vermont hemp plan wins USDA nod

Vermont’s plan to test oversee hemp production has won approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The state announced its USDA clearance Monday, meaning the 2022 growing season will be the first under 2018 Farm Bill rules, which include total THC testing for most hemp plants.

Vermont exempts hemp’s fiber and grain varieties from pre-harvest THC testing as long as state agriculture officials “comprehensively inspect to confirm their use.” The state estimates that less than 10% of its 2021 hemp harvest was grown for fiber, hurd or grain.

Vermont plans to allow hemp farmers with “hot” crops to avoid destroying them if they:

  • Dispose of flowers and leaves, retaining only stalks, or
  • Chip the entire plant into biomass for extraction or other commercial purposes.

The remediation would have to be done with an agency of the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets on site.