With more and more states opening up their fields to the highly profitable and diverse hemp market, farmers in the US are starting to search specifically for hemp seeds for sale.
Not all hemp seeds are made equally. There are a number of important qualities that you’ll want your seeds to have with regards to growth, plant structure, flowering, and CBD-to-THC ratio. Most importantly, you want your seeds to produce legal crops.
So, no matter what type of hemp crop you want to sow — fiber, grain, or CBD — having the right seeds and knowing from where to source those seeds is essential.
Are Hemp Seeds Legal?
If you’re completely new to the industrial hemp farming world, the first step is to understand the legal quagmire that still surrounds the hemp industry.
The first major changes with regards to the legalization of hemp in the US (after it was basically decimated by legislation passed in 1937) was with the sprawling 2014 Farm Bill. In the bill were provisions that allowed states to initiate research programs on hemp cultivation.
Four years later, President Donald Trump signed into law the more expansive 2018 Farm Bill. This allowed for the transfer of hemp-derived products across state lines for commercial or other purposes without putting restrictions on the sale, transport, or possession of hemp-derived products (so long as those items are produced in a manner in accordance with the law).
One of the most important aspects of hemp crops is for your product to test at or below 0.3 percent THC concentration on a dry weight basis.
For example, in Wisconsin, no matter what documentation you have for your crops and what approval you’ve been given, your industrial hemp must test at or below 0.3 percent THC in the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection’s laboratory — or it will need to be destroyed.
That last bit is the scary part — and it’s precisely why sourcing your hemp seeds from the right place is so important. It’s hard to imagine how quickly a hemp farm would sink if an entire crop was lost because the seeds produced plants with too high of THC content, effectively making it a marijuana crop in the eyes of the law.
Different Types of Hemp Seed
On the most fundamental biological level, there are three types of industrial hemp seeds: oil, fiber, and grain. However, there is a lot more that you need to know about hemp seeds than just what kind of crops they yield.
Most importantly is the THC level of the crops. Hemp seeds and hemp clones are designed to provide the highest yield with the lowest possible THC levels. One of the easiest ways to dodge this bullet is to either use plant clones — which are genetic replicas of the parent plant — or use certified seeds.
Though there is no law requiring you to plant certified seed, it’s highly recommended to do so. Such seeds are more likely to produce a crop that comes in under the THC limits. Additionally, many markets demand hemp grown from certified seed.
Another major benefit of using certified seed is that it provides legal protection: if your crop is grown from certified seeds, you will not be prosecuted if your crop exceeds the THC limit — at least not in Wisconsin.
Remember state laws vary, which means it’s essential for you to know the laws of the land you plow.
For industrial hemp farmers in North Carolina, the Department of Agriculture requires notifications “if anything on your application changes during your licensing period”. This is important if you are growing varieties not originally listed on your application; if you are importing seeds or clones; if you are getting your seeds or clones from a new supplier; and other similar situations.
As the market matures, more and more seeds are being certified by agencies in various states, giving you more options for where to find hemp seeds for sale.
In 2017, the Colorado Department of Agriculture announced that four industrial hemp seed varieties had passed the statewide THC validation and observation trial, making them eligible to be grown by the Colorado Seed Growers Association.
As will become quickly obvious, many of the legal details and benchmarks for plants cultivated by hemp farmers are outlined by state law — varying significantly between states.
Important Characteristics of Hemp Seeds
Though the market in the US is still young with regards to industrial hemp seed production, there are a few US-based companies that provide top-flight seeds.
You’ll want to find seeds that have been selected from plant stock that provides strong plant structure, abundant flowering potential, rapid growth, and strong CBD-to-THC ratios. This can only be consistently accomplished by companies that provide an impeccable environment without any foreign plants being introduced into it.
Importing Hemp Seed
It is possible to import your hemp seeds from Canada — which has been more actively producing hemp than the US in recent history — as long as you have a phytosanitary certification from Canada’s national plant protection organization and a Federal Seed Analysis Certificate for hemp seeds grown in Canada. It is also possible to source hemp seeds from other countries, but you’ll need similar documentation.
According to Cannabis Business Times, all hemp seed imports remain subject to inspection by US Customs and Border Protection.
However, according to US District Judge Jesus Bernal, “Section 12619 of the 2018 Farm Bill amended the CSA definition of marijuana so that it now includes an exemption for hemp, defined as ‘any part’ of the Cannabis sativa L. plant ‘with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.’ Under this new exemption, any future shipments of industrial hemp product containing less than 0.3% THC by dry weight will clearly fall outside the CSA definition of marijuana and will not be subject to seizure.”
This means your imports should have no issues. Nonetheless, with strong suppliers inside the US, it might not be worth the hassle and worry.
Final Thoughts: Where to Find Hemp Seeds for Sale
When it comes to hemp seeds and plant clones, buying American is likely going to be your best bet. The plants will have been selected and designed to meet the regulatory requirements adopted by most states embracing industrial hemp farming, which is essential for your success.
They key is to get hemp seeds that are going to keep you on the right side of the law, while also producing maximum yield from your crops: be that for grain, fiber, or CBD oil.
So, when you’re wondering where to find hemp seeds for sale, look no further than Bonafide Seeds. Have questions about why our seeds are superior? Contact us directly.