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Utah's New Hemp & CBD Industry

April Morris

Posted on November 05 2018

Utah's New Hemp & CBD Industry
On October 15th a 3-part rule change addressing the growth of, processing of, and distribution of hemp and hemp products including Cannabinoids or CBDs went into effect for Utah. The deputy commissioner of the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food is ready to see the development of a new hemp industry for the state. A few years ago, the farm bill that passed allowed the growth of industrial hemp for research purposes only. Now anyone 18 and older without a criminal history can apply for an annual license from the state to grow industrial hemp.  The license costs $500 which will help cover the testing and regulation of the product by the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food Department. Before each harvest, crops are to be tested for levels of THC.  The level mush be below 0.3% to pass inspection. Crops testing above 0.3% will need to be destroyed but farmers will only face criminal penalties if the crop tests above 1% THC. The new rules do not put a limit on the amount of acreage a farmer can grow on but does put limitations on where - growing or processing industrial hemp is prohibited within a thousand feet of a school.

Farmers are also responsible for posting signs that clearly indicate that the plants grown are hemp and not marijuana. The new regulations don’t only apply to farmers, processors will also need to apply for a state license – costing $1,000 per year. Again, an applicant must be over the age of 18 with a clear criminal history to apply. The final regulation change allows for the legal sale of hemp products that were otherwise not legally available for purchase in Utah.

The rule establishes labeling requirements and quality assurance procedures for all products that are intended for ingestion or absorption by humans or animals with industrial hemp. A product containing hemp oil, extract or CBD will have a $200 registration fee and any product containing hemp seed will pay $100 fee. These rules and regulations come after a poisoning outbreak this past spring where 52 people were sent to the emergency rooms after consuming synthetic cannabinoids or “fake CBDs.” With the new product regulations, consumers are safe to jump on the popular CBD trend knowing that all industrial hemp products will follow FDA manufacturing rules for dietary supplements, no butane or propane will be used in the extraction process, products will meet the state approved cannabinoid profile and will be tested for other pesticides and contaminates. 

The recent updates to Utah’s Hemp and Cannabidiol act were posted in the September Utah State Bulletin. Constituents had a 30-day window to submit comment on the new proposed rules and on October 15th the changes went into effect.

By: Kayla Wigle

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