Industrial Hemp Pilot Program

July 6, 2018

In June 2018, the Hawaii Department of Agriculture issued the first licenses to growers under the Industrial Hemp Pilot Program.

Name County # of acres
Gail Baber Hawaii 10
Raymond Maki Kauai 10
Thomas Pace Hawaii 10

The program will continue to review and issue licenses on a quarterly basis.

To view the news release, click here.

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April 18, 2018

HDOA is now accepting applications for the Industrial Hemp Pilot Program.

To obtain an application form, click here.

To view the news release announcing the start of the program, click here.

The genetic currently available for growers is Yuma, a fiber and grain varietal.

Seed quantities and varietals may be very limited until 2019, so growers may want to consider waiting on applying.  See available genetics timetable below.

Application processing and licensing times will depend on the volume of applications HDOA receives.  Submission of an application does not guarantee that it will be processed before the closest license issuance period.

 

Pesticide Usage on Hemp

  • It is the grower’s responsibility to verify that any pesticide (including fungicides and bioinsecticides) usage follows all state and federal laws.
  • There are currently NO products registered for use on hemp, either with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) or with the Hawaii State Department of Agriculture (HDOA).
  • See HDOA’s 2017 guidance document for usage of pesticides on medical marijuana, which is also applicable to hemp: https://hdoa.hawaii.gov/pi/files/2013/01/Guidance-for-Medical-Marijuana-Jan2017b.pdf
  • If you have any questions after reading the guidance, please contact 808-973-9415 or hdoapestreg@hawaii.gov for information about product registration and licensing, or 808-973-9401 for any other information regarding pesticide use.

Information on Yuma:

  • Yuma is a fiber/grain varietal and should be grown outdoor in field. WARNING: a full flower test of Yuma grown in Hawaii in pots in a greenhouse with some supplemental lighting during the winter period resulted in a total THC level of 0.43%.  Tests of the genetic in outdoor grows in Malawi and NSW Australia seem to indicate that grown outdoor in field, Yuma should perform at around 0.2% total THC.
  • Physical characteristics: quick vertical growth, can get to be 10-15 feet in height.
  • Growth period: 120-180 days. Flowering period: 40-90 days.
  • Seeding rate:
    • 12 pounds per acre for seed production: this rate allows more branching.
    • 20 pounds per acre for dense fibrous growth.
  • Yield rate estimates for a seeding rate of 20 lbs/acre:*
    • Grain/seed: 1000-1700 lbs per acre
    • Dry biomass: 4.5-5.5 tons per acre.

* these yield rates are from experienced commercial grows in China, growing in Hawaii may result in very different yields.

Timeline of Available Genetics

  • Fiber/Grain varietal- Yuma- Currently available.
  • CBD varietal(s)- Fall 2018
  • Tri-crop varietal- Spring 2019 planting season.

 

All dates and times are estimates, and subject to change without notice, being contingent upon seed development and availability.  Check here for updates.

Quarterly License Issuance periods:

  • Applications are accepted at any time, but licenses will only be issued 4 times a year, in the following months:
    • March
    • June
    • September
    • December

Authorized Laboratories:

Laboratories authorized to test for HDOA’s industrial hemp pilot program are those which are currently provisionally certified or certified to test cannabis for potency by the State of Hawaii Department of Health.  As of 4/18/2018 those labs are:

  • Aeos Labs
  • PharmLabs Hawaii
  • Steep Hill Hawaii
  • It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that the laboratory they intend to use is willing to collect samples from their proposed location, and it is the licensee’s responsibility to pay for all such sample collection and testing as billed by the laboratory. Mileage and hourly rate for sample collection is set by statute, but other costs may vary by the laboratory.  Applicants should obtain a sampling and testing quote from the laboratory they intend to utilize.
  • Laboratories shall perform sampling and testing in accordance with the following protocol here

Licensing Process:

  • HDOA will notify successful applicants, and applicants whose applications have been rejected.
    • If you have not heard anything about your application, it is still awaiting processing or currently under review. Frequent inquiries about the status of an application may delay processing in general. 
  • Successful applicants will be sent a Licensing Agreement for review and signature. HDOA may contact applicant during this period to review the Licensing Agreement and regulations to ensure understanding.
  • Applicant, if agreeable to the Licensing Agreement, must remit both the signed Licensing Agreement, and licensing fee of $250.00 +appropriate amounts for acreage and square ft. to HDOA.
  • After receiving a signed Licensing Agreement and license fee, HDOA can issue applicant a license.
  • Licenses are good for two years from the date of the license, as long as a license fee of $250.00 + acreage/square footage cost is paid at the start of the second year of the license to maintain the license (in addition to program compliance).

Resources

Program Contact: shelley.n.choy@hawaii.gov  or call  (808) 832-0676

Quality Assurance Division
Hawaii Department of Agriculture
1851 Auiki Street
Honolulu, HI 96819