Louisiana Becomes First State to Get USDA Approval for Industrial Hemp

By Rachael Thomas

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has now approved Louisiana’s hemp plan, making it the first of three states to get approval as part of the 2018 Farm Bill. Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Commissioner Mike Strain made the announcement Friday, Dec. 27.

“With the USDA approving our state industrial hemp plan, the pieces of the regulatory puzzle are falling into place. We are now able to move forward and begin accepting industrial hemp license applications,” Strain said.

Anyone growing, handling, transporting, or processing industrial hemp or hemp seed is required to have a license issued by LDAF. All applicants must submit a completed application, background checks and fees.


  • Grower: Authorizes the licensee to cultivate, handle, and transport industrial hemp regardless of the intended use
  • Processor: Authorizes the licensee to handle, process, and transport industrial hemp
  • Seed Producer: Authorizes the licensee to produce, transport, and sell industrial hemp seed
  • Contract Carrier: Authorizes the licensee to transport industrial hemp; required when the transporter is not the licensed grower or processor of the plant material

“Our industrial hemp program administrators have worked very hard to ensure the state regulatory framework was in place as soon as feasibly possible. I am pleased that we remain on track to issue licenses for the 2020 planting season,” said Strain.

For more information about the Louisiana Industrial Hemp Program, click here.

Click here to read the letter of approval.

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