In the first survey of its kind, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will be gathering feedback from about 20,000 hemp farmers to understand the country’s relatively new industry.
The inaugural Hemp Acreage and Production survey will collect industry information on acreage, yield, production, price and value of hemp in America.
Confidential data will be used to set industry benchmarks for acreage and production, as well as help producers make informed decisions.
The USDA will be mailing out the survey to hemp farmers, who can fill out the paper questionnaire or use a provided access code to complete the survey online, starting Oct. 18.
Frequently Asked Questions for @usda_nass’s 2021 Hemp Acreage and Production Survey are now available. The survey will collect information on the total planted and harvested area, yield, production, and value of #hemp in the United States. Learn more: https://t.co/ulHsYPgmYP pic.twitter.com/CtfTATkaSV
— National Agricultural Statistics Service (@usda_nass) August 26, 2021
The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (2018 Farm Bill) permitted hemp production and removed hemp and hemp seeds from the DEA’s controlled substances list. Since then, the USDA has implemented the Domestic Hemp Production Program to create a regulatory framework.
“The establishment of hemp as a regulated commodity also paves the way for U.S. hemp farmers to participate in other USDA farm programs,” reads the agency’s website.
Regulations for U.S. hemp production were finalized in January, and have been in effect since March.
But there isn’t comprehensive data on hemp as a commodity, the USDA’s statistical branch notes in a description of the survey.
“As new consumer markets are developed, the need for annual data on acreage and production are highly sought after. Data collected less than annually would interfere with the mandate stated in the 2018 Farm Bill,” the description continues.
The questionnaire will use data from hemp grown in the open and under cover, such as in a greenhouse or hoop house.
“Hemp produced in the open will have data collected for five categories of hemp (flower, grain, fiber, seed, and other). Hemp produced under cover will have data collected for four categories of hemp (flower, clones or transplants, seed, or other).”
The USDA plans to conduct the hemp survey annually.