16 Oct What Will Florida’s Hemp Program Look Like?
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) published a Notice of Proposed Rules on the licensure for the cultivation and sale of hemp in the state of Florida, on October 10th, 2019. These are the regulations set forth to implement Florida Senate Bill 1020 (SB 1020). SB 1020 was passed in June 2019 and is intended to create Florida’s Hemp program of which the FDACS would oversee regulating.
This notice highlights several rules the state will require for farmers to grow hemp.
- Requires a license to cultivate hemp.
- Requires an applicant for a hemp cultivation license to submit a full set of fingerprints to the department for a criminal background check.
- Requires a license applicant to provide the global positioning coordinates and legal land description of the area where hemp will be cultivated.
- Authorizes the department to enter any public or private premises during regular business hours in performance of its duties related to hemp cultivation, including inspections.
- Hemp seed and hemp seed dealers are subject to the provisions of the Florida Seed Law and that registrants shall only use certified seeds.
- Creates the Industrial Hemp Advisory Council to provide advice and expertise to the department with respect to plans, policies and procedures applicable to the administration of the state hemp program.
- Expands eligible participants in the industrial hemp pilot projects to include colleges and universities with engineering or pharmacy programs.
- Excludes hemp and industrial hemp from the definition of the controlled substance “cannabis.”
The 3 Departments Designated to Regulate Hemp Within the FDACS
- The Division of Plant Industry will be in charge of cultivation and licenses. Hemp cannot be planted until the FDACS announces license applications are being accepted, which may be the end of the year.
- The Division of Food Safety will oversee processing, manufacturing and retailing of hemp and hemp extract. Hemp Food Establishment Permits will be issued once the rules are finalized.
- The Division of Agricultural Environmental Services will deal with issues related to seeds, fertilizer and animal feed.
Additionally, final note on CBD…. CBD Products in Florida are currently unregulated and untested. Once the rules are finalized, the FDACS will regulate CBD products by testing them to ensure consumer safety.
Before the rules are adopted public hearings will be held on the proposed rules.
- October 18th @ 9AM in the Capitol Cabinet Room in Tallahassee.
- October 21st @ 9AM at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa.
Public comment on these rules will be accepted through October 31st. Once the rules are finalized, they will be sent to the United States Secretary of Agriculture.
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