It’s a new year, and a new batch of eager hemp farmers in Alabama applying for their license. The Alabama Hemp Industry continues to grow, and demonstrate financial promise. This may lead to more farmers considering adding hemp to their crop rotation.
To stay in-the-know, when it comes to hemp farming in Alabama, here’s an update.
How 2021 looks so far
Even early on into the year, Alabama is seeing an increase in the number of registered hemp growers. The Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries (ADAI) continues to approve licenses. And, as of right now, there is a higher number of growers in the state.
At the same time, ADAI is noticing that less acreage, overall, is getting devoted to hemp. This could potentially be a result of the knowledge farmers already have when it comes to hemp. They’re realizing that the time and labor necessary to produce quality hemp may require a smaller grow. A 2021 trend could be that large-scale operations are taking a slight step back in the quantity they grow. This would allow them to maintain the superiority of their crop.
Advice on pesticides in 2021
Each state has its own set of regulations when it comes to pesticides and hemp crops. In Alabama, approved pesticides include:
To get added to the state’s approved list of pesticides, they must meet certain qualifications. Products must both be registered with ADAI and with the EPA or exempt from EPA’s process. Usage of any approved pesticide must follow the label instructions. It also needs to comply with the federal Worker Protection Standard.
Although these products are legal, since hemp is still a new crop, there’s a lack of efficacy data on using them. For that reason, it’s best to take an integrated approach to keeping your crop safe. Use other pest management strategies instead of only incorporating chemicals for control.
Important information on a national scale
It’s also worth noting that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Final Rule may impact local growers across the country. It has only recently taken effect, but the big takeaways include a longer harvest window and an increase to the negligence threshold level when it comes to THC. This will help growers avoid criminal sanctions if crops go hot.
The legal THC limit of 0.3 percent, however, will remain the same.
Research is key
As the hemp industry goes, Alabama is approaching the plant knowing there’s a lot still to learn. Research programs are in development that will eventually help local growers. By taking into consideration the specific growing conditions found in Alabama, the outcome of this research will prove highly beneficial. This is especially true when it comes to managing the crop in high temperatures and high humidity.
Current programs for hemp research in Alabama include:
- Alabama Extension agents and specialists can visit fields, make recommendations, and transport samples back to the lab if necessary. They can also cultivate hemp on a research farm or in a greenhouse.
- The Plant Diagnostic Laboratory at Auburn University has the capacity to diagnose hemp plant disease issues and run analysis on leaf tissue.
Stay on top of developments in Alabama hemp
Keeping on-top of all local regulations and changes is what keeps Arbor Vita8 running smoothly. Our attention to detail, both inside our processing facilities and within the industry itself, mean we comply to the highest standards around. From seed-to-sale, we ensure our partner farmers and manufacturers have top-quality hemp products. Contact us today to learn more.