Vicente Sederberg LLP Hemp Update: June 2020

Jun 4, 2020

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Upcoming Deadline: Massachusetts Climate Smart Agricultural Program Grant

Applications for the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources’ Climate Smart Agriculture Program are due on Friday, June 19, 2020 by 4:00 p.m. ET. Maximum funding per application is 80% of total project costs up to $50,000. Projects that help the agricultural sector reduce vulnerability to climate change and improve economic resiliency are eligible. Example of eligible projects include updated water management techniques, such as improving irrigation and installing or enhancing drainage systems. See the RFR for complete grant details, including eligibility criteria. *Note, projects involving marijuana are not eligible for funding at this time.

Hemp Producers Not Automatically Eligible for Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP)

The USDA recently announced a new relief program for producers, CFAP, but hemp is not listed as an eligible commodity. However, hemp producers may be eligible if they submit information for consideration if they “believe they’ve suffered a 5% or greater price decline between mid-January and mid-April 2020 due to COVID-19.” Hemp producers who believe they are eligible may submit comments to this docket by June 22, 2020. View this FAQ for more information.

USDA Released New Guidelines for Federal Loans to Hemp Producers

The USDA released new Guidance on Servicing Direct and Guaranteed Loans with Hemp Producers outlining the eligibility and application requirements industrial hemp producers must satisfy to access USDA’s lending services. Starting with the 2020 growing season, producers growing hemp under the 2018 Farm Bill are eligible to receive FSA loans. FSA will require applicants growing under the 2018 Farm Bill to be licensed under a State or Tribal plan approved by the USDA or if a producer resides in a State or Tribe that does not have a USDA-approved plan, the producer must be licensed directly by USDA. Read more about eligibility and application requirements.  

Epidiolex Was Removed from the CSA. Now What?

Things changed for patients, CBD consumers, businesses and members of the medical community when Greenwich Biosciences, Inc. announced that their FDA-approved cannabidiol (CBD) based pharmaceutical Epidiolex® was no longer considered a controlled substance under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Why is this significant and what are the implications? Find out here.



State Updates



On May 20, 2020, the MED released a compliance tip for industrial hemp products. This bulletin applies CDPHE registered CBD product manufacturers who would like to sell their products to dispensaries, along with marijuana retail stores, manufacturers, and testing facilities. CDPHE registered CBD product manufacturers that would like to sell their products to dispensaries. We encourage you to read the compliance tip to understand how it might affect your business.


USDA approved Florida’s hemp plan on April 16, 2020, and the Florida Dept. of Agriculture and Consumer Services is accepting cultivation licenses as of April 27. Read more about Florida’s hemp program in the VS Insights post, "Florida is Ready for the Hemp Industry."


Earlier this month, the USDA approved Massachusetts’s hemp plan. Any individual or business that wants to grow or process hemp for commercial purposes in the Commonwealth can apply for a license through MDAR


In late April, Texas Dept. of State Health and Human Services (DSHS) issues proposed rules for regulating the manufacture and sale of consumable hemp products, including products containing CBD. The state is accepting comments on the new rules through June 8, 2020. Read more about this in the VS Insights post, “What’s Next for Texas Hemp?

On June 1, 2020, the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) adopted new hemp seed certification standards. The State Seed and Plant Board has the authority to establish standards of genetic purity and identity as necessary for the efficient enforcement of agricultural interest. These final regulations are identical to the draft regulations published in April as TDA reports no public comments were received. 

U.S. Virgin Islands

On May 27, 2020, the Virgin Islands became the first U.S. territory to have its hemp plan accepted by the USDA. 


After an 18-month process, Vermont’s hemp rules became effective on May 21, 2020. If you wish to grow or process hemp crops or hemp products in 2020, you must register with the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets.

USDA Approvals of Tribal Hemp Plans

Since the last update, the USDA approved hemp regulatory plans for the following tribes:

  • Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes
  • Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe
  • Chippewa Cree Tribe
  • Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians
  • Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida
  • Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians
  • Rosebud Sioux Tribe
  • Pala Band of Mission Indians
  • Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska

View the USDA approval status of each state and tribe hemp production plan here.



Upcoming Events


Oregon Hemp Convention Digital Summit | June 17-18, 2020

  • Courtney Barnes will participate in the panel "Legal Review: An Hour of Live Q&A" on Wednesday, June 17 at 4 p.m. PT

  • Shawn Hauser will present “Legal Review: The Future of Hemp Compliance” with on Thursday, June 18 at 9 a.m. PT.

  • Registration is free! Click here to register.

8th Annual Legal, Regulatory & Compliance Forum on Dietary Supplements | June 25, 2020

  • Shawn Hauser will participate in the virtual workshop “Understanding the Current Domestic and International Legal Status and How to Manage Legal Risks for Distributing Hemp-Derived CBD Products” at 9 a.m. ET.
  • Register here and use code S10-669-669L20.S for 10% off. 

Hemp Industry Daily Virtual Conference | June 30, 2020

  • Andrew Livingston will present the featured session, “From Illegal to Essential: The New Cultural, Regulatory and Economic Factors Influencing Marijuana and Hemp Markets” at 10 a.m. ET.

  • Register here to watch it live!

Free Webinar: Preparing for FDA cGMP Facility Inspections

  • Are you in the dietary supplement industry? Watch this webinar to understand the elements of current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) regulations that have been the primary focus of recent FDA inspections, learn more about compliance issues, and learn strategies to avoid receiving an FDA warning letter.

  • Watch here, on-demand.


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