Alaska’s Industrial Hemp Pilot Program
June 15, 2018
In April 2018, Governor Walker signed into law Senate Bill 6, regarding the establishment of an industrial hemp program in Alaska (Chapter 5, SLA 2018). Additional requirements still need to be met before industrial hemp may be grown, marketed, or sold in Alaska.
What is the purpose of the State of Alaska Industrial Hemp Pilot Program?
The new law authorizes the Alaska Department of Natural Resources (DNR), through the Division of Agriculture, to create an Industrial Hemp Pilot Program to research the growth, cultivation, and marketing of industrial hemp. The purpose of the pilot program is to increase the knowledge of how industrial hemp production, cultivation, and marketing may increase agricultural production in Alaska and contribute to our economy.
What is the status of the pilot program?
With the enactment of the new law, Ch. 5, SLA 2018, DNR is authorized to create and administer an industrial hemp pilot program to study the growth, cultivation, and marketing of industrial hemp in Alaska. DNR is working with the Alaska Department of Law to develop regulations necessary to implement this program. Until the final regulations are adopted, the pilot program will not be in place and any growth, production, cultivation, marketing, or sale of industrial hemp remains illegal.
Will interested parties get to participate in the regulation process?
Yes. Once regulations for the pilot program are drafted, they will be published on the State of Alaska Online Public Notices website and Division of Agriculture's Public Noticeswebpage and will be made available for public comment. Interested parties will have time to review and comment on the draft regulations prior to implementation. If you think this new program will affect you, you should read the proposed regulations and submit comments and questions to the contact listed in the public notice, within the time provided.
Can I grow industrial hemp in Alaska now?
No. Industrial hemp cannot be grown, cultivated, or marketed legally in the State of Alaska until regulations to implement the new law are adopted and effective.
What is industrial hemp?
The new law, Ch. 5, SLA 2018, defines industrial hemp as all parts and varieties of the plant Cannabis sativa L. containing not more than 0.3 percent of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).