We all know hemp to be a successful industry. It wasn’t a full year before its federal legalization led to billions in revenue. But revenue alone isn’t enough of an accurate marker of its progress. It is a major factor, for sure. But there’s just so much more to keep in mind when considering industrial hemp and its economic effect.
Below, we do a deep dive into a prominent hemp study from 2020. Recognized by the USDA, the study uses several pilot programs as a measuring guide. Let’s take a look at what they found!
Hemp In The US
Hemp has long had a strained relationship with the US and its restrictions. It would be almost half a century before it’d start seeing some real traction. The piece cites “the 2014 Farm Bill” as the catalyst for this resurgence. This saw a wealth of relevant pilot programs commissioned by various states.
In the time between 2014’s Farm Bill and its 2018 successor, industrial hemp acreage grew a lot. It went from non-existent, to almost 100,000 acres across these pilot programs. Each of these instances yielded some kind of valuable data. This has helped to inform the hemp industry’s trajectory a great deal.
State Pilot Programs
Keep in mind that when these pilot programs began, hemp hadn’t been legally explored in years. One of the biggest challenges was not having a clear consensus on best practices. These programs helped to fashion many of the hemp “blueprints” in use today.
Another challenge was operating within the confines of law. Though these programs secured approval, there was still a lot of legal red tape. This complicated the push for nationwide legalization. But, it also spurred almost universal support for strides to be made in this area.
Leveling Up Industrial Hemp
By the time the 2018 Farm Bill came along, many failure points in the hemp space were addressed. That’s not to say there weren’t a host of other issues to come about. But at least with the info gained in the previous 5 years, they could move ahead with more understanding.
It’s also important to keep a realistic perspective when it comes to our favorite plant and the economy. “Long-run economic viability will be affected by factors including:
competition from other domestic crops for acreage
- global competitors in hemp and hemp products
- market information and transparency
- the regulatory environment.”
Though it’s seen its fair share of progression, there’s still so much more ground to cover. There’s still “a lack of transparent data and peer-reviewed research and market information.” Thankfully, rollbacks on restrictions bode well for this as we approach the future. We encourage you to read the study in its entirety for a full grasp hemp and the economy! Economic Viability of Industrial Hemp in the United States: A Review of State Pilot Programs.
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to hemp. Have any more questions? Arbor Vita8 is the partner you need to navigate this industry. Schedule a consultation with us today!