By Marco Leavitt
With a host of derivative products, hemp profits have exploded in the United States since its legalization in late 2018. Hemp is different from other crops. Based on how they grow their crop, farmers have a choice as to what it becomes after harvest. That choice impacts profit, but also allows them to focus on areas within the market where supply is lacking. This makes hemp a unique crop, as well as one that has potential for large profits.
Hemp poised to become third largest US crop
As a whole, hemp is looking good. An economic survey last year by Whitney Economics projected that the industry will become the third largest agricultural crop in the United States by revenue. They placed the full value of acreage for hemp in 2019 at $11.3 billion, which makes up some six percent of the total value of U.S. cash crops.
This is good news for the potential of hemp as a whole, but you can also look at the profits of the crop based on its uses.
Extracting hemp cannabinoids
The most popular cannabinoid extracted from hemp is CBD. However, it’s only one of six top cannabinoids that have potential for manufacturers today. Out of the six, five are hemp-derived products legal to sell across the country. Keep this in mind when considering profits.
Chicago research firm Brightfield Group calculates that about 87 percent of the 285,000 acres of hemp planted in the United States in 2019 were for the CBD industry. A typical CBD plant should have levels around 10 percent at maturity, making each plant worth $10-$15. This puts the yield at about $18,000-$33,000 per acre. While it’s not all profit, since you have to factor in the cost of seed, cultivation, and harvest, it’s nothing to frown at.
Other cannabinoids — CBN, CBG, CBC, D8, and terpenes — all appear in smaller quantities than CBD. This means you need more plants to get a usable amount of extract. It also means they have a higher value. Whether the work involved with these extracts is worth it is an individual decision for farmers. However, the CBN market, on its own, may reach $84.9 billion by 2021. And, while plants are just one part of the overall market, this data is a good hint as to the profits that can come from growing hemp for one of the harder-to-produce cannabinoids.
Hemp fiber for profits
Growing hemp for fiber is a potential game-changer because of how it impacts your crop size. Hemp grown for CBD and other cannabinoids requires you to space the plants out at a further distance than when you grow for fiber. You can usually fit 300,000 plants per acre when going this route.
Hemp fiber may have a lower value than CBD, but the sheer volume can create solid profits. Hemp fiber is worth about $260 per ton, and a single acre of hemp grown for fiber yields between 2-3 tons. That puts the value at $520-$780 per acre.
Costs are also lower to manage a hemp crop grown for fiber than for CBD, so you don’t lose as many profits in the maintenance and care of your plants.
Making more hemp seeds
Yet another way to grow a hemp crop is to use the plants to make more hemp seeds. This strategy allows farmers to treat hemp like any other grain crop, which can make it easier to farm overall. Hemp seed goes into a variety of food products, supplements, and animal feeds. There is a decent market. It’s also easier to harvest and store.
Total yield, per acre, for hemp seed is between $520-$750. This spells big profits.
Managing your profits right
No matter how you plan on utilizing your hemp crop, the scariest thing for farmers is getting a bad deal when it’s time to sell. Arbor Vita8 puts the needs of their partner farmers first. We work with you from seed-to-sale to ensure the highest profits all around. From wholesale seed purchases to selling to the manufacturers offering top dollar, we can guide you through the entire process. Contact us today to learn more.
Hemp value data sourced from: https://sterlinghempseed.com/how-much-can-you-make-growing-hemp/