The passage of the 2018 Farm Bill established industrial hemp as an industrial commodity—not a controlled substance—in the state of Alabama. Farm Bill legislation defines hemp as all parts of the plant less than 0.3% THC, including derivatives, extracts, and cannabinoids. Tetrahydrocannabinol—or THC— is the chemical responsible for most of marijuana’s psychological effects. The cultivation and production of industrial hemp is illegal without a grower’s permit obtained from the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries (ADAI).
The ADAI, Alabama Cooperative Extension System and the Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station (AAES) are partnering to provide growers with production information and growing guidelines. Applications for the 2020 growing season will be available through the ADAI. The anticipated dates for accepting hemp applications for the 2020 Hemp Program will be October 7 through November 14, 2019. Hemp applications will be open to growers, processors/handlers, and universities.
Alabama Extension professionals will be providing guidance to Alabama hemp growers through the cultivation and harvesting season. Though Extension personnel cannot collect or transport samples, they will be able to offer research-based solutions to weed and insect control issues.
Extension Hemp Action Team
Alabama Extension has assembled a team of experts to assist hemp growers as needs arise.
- Neil Kelly, Commercial Horticulture Regional Extension Agent
- Eric Schavey, Commercial Horticulture Regional Extension Agent
- Rudy Yates, Agronomic Crops Regional Extension Agent
- Brandon Dillard, Agronomic Crops Regional Extension Agent
- Kevin Burkett, Agribusiness Regional Extension Agent
- Jessica Kelton, Agribusiness Regional Extension Agent
- Kassie Conner, Extension Plant Diagnostician
- Dennis Delaney, Extension Agronomist
- Katelyn Kesheimer, Extension Entomologist
- Edward Sikora, Extension Plant Pathologist
Hemp Management Resources
- Insects of Industrial Hemp: Year One
- Managing Fire Ants in Hemp by Dr. Kassie Conner and Dr. Katelyn Kesheimer
- Pesticide Use in Hemp
- Late Season Insect Control in Hemp