MDARD reminder: Growing hemp to be sold as plant starts

As hemp growers prepare for planting season, the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) is reminding those interested in growing hemp to be sold as plant starts, also known as propagative stock, to remember:

  • You are required to hold a Hemp Grower Registration to grow hemp, of any quantity and to any plant growth stage. Click here for an application.
  • You are required to hold a Hemp Processor-Handler License from the Cannabis Regulatory Agency to process, handle, transport, market, broker, or sell hemp plants (or seed). Click here for the processor-handler application.
  • Hemp Processor-Handlers cannot sell viable hemp plants (or seed) to the public. Hemp Processor-Handlers can sell viable hemp only to registered Hemp Growers or other licensed Hemp Processor-Handlers.
  • Like any hemp crop, each lot of contiguously planted hemp of each variety must be sampled and tested by MDARD prior to being harvested, which includes gathering up immature plants for sale or movement off the grower’s registered growing locations. Click here for steps to request preharvest sampling.
  • Registered growers can also sign up for Performance-Based Sampling (PBS) of immature plants. Instead of paying for MDARD to sample and test lots every time a grower has a batch of immature plants ready for sale, a grower participating in PBS requests sampling of each variety only once per year. If a variety complies with THC testing, no additional sampling is required for the year.
    • Note: Federal and state law allow for PBS plans but otherwise require sampling and testing for THC compliance, even of immature plants. More information about requesting PBS can be found here. MDARD expects to adjust PBS over time with United States Department of Agriculture approval as more data becomes available.
  • Recordkeeping is required. All growers must maintain records showing the name and address of the supplier from whom seed or starts were purchased. Maintain seed labels and Certificates of Analysis, particularly if you are interested in Performance-Based Sampling.

This information is current as of March 2, 2023.

For more information about Michigan hemp licensing for growing and/or processing, and help with licensing applications and associated laws and regulations, please reach Michigan Cannabis Lawyers at (517) 512-8364.

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