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Industrial Hemp Research Pilot Program

Industrial Hemp Research Pilot Program

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  • Parties interested in participating in the Kentucky Program should be sure to read the 2017 Policy Guide.
  • There are separate applications for Growers and Processors/Handlers.
  • The 2017 Grower and Processors Application periods are CLOSED.  There are NO EXCEPTIONS. 
  • 2018 Applications are expected to be available at the end of October.  If you are interested in being notified when the applications are released, send an email to requesting to be added to the notification list (if you have not already been added).

As 7 U.S.C. § 5940 (2014 Farm Bill, Section 7606) authorized Departments of Agriculture to create industrial hemp research pilot programs, we wish to remind everyone that the focus of this program is research. The application evaluation process is clearly defined in the Industrial Hemp Research Pilot Program 2017 Policy Guide.

KDA is not in the position to offer direct consultation on completing a program application or about how to produce industrial hemp. Prospective participants are to conduct research which will add to the industrial hemp body of knowledge that is currently limited. For a better understanding of hemp production techniques refer to a recent publication by the University of Kentucky.

All costs associated with the research are the responsibility of the participant, including both profits and loss. There are no sources of funding from KDA to cover any aspect of research projects. Participants should understand that at the present time it is likely that they may suffer a loss on the industrial hemp crop. Limited production knowledge combined with an uncertain federal regulatory environment and unstable pricing creates significant risk for the participant. The focus of this program is the collection of research data.

KDA has made available a complete list of 2017 participants, by name and county, including both growers and processors. Please note the listed name is the name in which the participant Memorandum of Understanding is issued, either by individual or by company; the listed county is the county where sites are licensed to grow or process industrial hemp. This list does not include affiliated university projects.

Persons interested in Kentucky's Industrial Hemp Research Pilot Program and not already on the email notification list should send an email to with your name and contact information to be added to the list. Notifications will include announcements for industrial hemp field days, conferences, application releases, etc.

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