On September 2, the state of Missouri’s agriculture department confirmed that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) had approved its regulatory plans. The Missouri Department of Agriculture confirmed that the Industrial Hemp Plant was approved without any changes or revisions asked by the federal regulatory body.
Earlier this year, six states had their regulatory plans shot down by the USDA. On the same day that the state of Missouri had its approval, the state Maine and the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians also had their plans approved. There are now 58 states, tribes, and territories that currently have hemp farming approval from the USDA.
The state of Missouri’s director of agriculture, Chris Chin, said that the department worked as a team to achieve a legal framework for the state’s hemp operators who wanted to diversify in the industry.
The approval by the USDA grants the state permission to oversee the hemp industry within its boundaries. The agriculture department also confirmed that the approval was reaffirmed by the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service to follow federal laws and regulations.
Earlier on in a letter to the USDA director of speciality crops program dated August 5 2020, Director Chin said that the state had all the necessary resources that would enable it to oversee the industry in line with the set requirements.
In the approved plan, farmers will pay a fixed sum of $750 to secure annual permits. This is regardless of acreage. Also, the farmers will have to pay undermined fees for sampling and testing.
According to the state agriculture department’s website, this may be the first time that farmers may legally plant industrial hemp on Missouri soil. Data from the inaugural 2020 growing session shows that the farmers are already planning for 3696 acres for hemp cultivation.