Tennessee hemp producers reminded of upcoming deadlines

NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Department of Agriculture (TDA) and UDSA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) are teaming up to remind hemp producers of important deadlines.

“We want to see this evolving agricultural sector progress in Tennessee,” Agriculture Commissioner Charlie Hatcher, D.V.M. said. “We both play a part in the successful implementation of the state’s hemp program by working together to support growers and providing resources for them.”

To produce hemp in Tennessee, you must first be licensed by TDA which administers the state’s hemp program. Next, all licensed hemp producers are required to set up a Farm Record with FSA and report their hemp crop acreage yearly by the crop reporting deadline of July 31. FSA is the USDA agency that issues lot numbers used to track hemp.

“We are equally invested in the success of Tennessee hemp producers,” USDA Tennessee FSA State Executive Director John Litz said. “The crop acreage reporting requirement helps producers maintain good records and that helps them secure opportunities for USDA cost share funds, loans and other program aid. FSA also has a Beginning Farmer Coordinator who assists with those who are new to agricultural operations in Tennessee.”

“TDA and FSA act as a team to make sure hemp producers have what they need,” TDA’s Hemp Coordinator Denise Woods said. “It’s imperative that current producers complete their applications now to ensure no lapse in licensure. Producers can easily complete their application online and we also have a Hemp Grower Application Checklist at the bottom of the application to help them make sure they have all requirements submitted.”

Hemp producers with a current license in Tennessee are required to reapply with TDA by June 30, 2022 at 4:30 p.m. CDT. New producer applications are accepted year-round and expire June 30 annually. All applicants must submit an application, license fees and required documentation. If the application and payment are not received by the deadline, the producer’s license will expire June 30, 2022 at 4:30 p.m. CDT.

The deadline for crop acreage reporting to FSA is July 31 annually.

Information about the hemp program in Tennessee can be found online at www.tn.gov/agriculture/farms/hemp-industry.html. The hemp grower application can be found at  stateoftennessee.formstack.com/forms/tda_hemp_propagator_broker_application.  Growers without online access should call 615-837-5137 for a paper application well in advance of the June 30 deadline.

The Tennessee Department of Agriculture’s mission is to serve the citizens of Tennessee by promoting responsible uses of our agricultural and forest resources, developing economic opportunities and ensuring safe and dependable food and fiber. Visit www.tn.gov/agriculture to learn more.

FSA provides disaster assistance, safety net, farm loan and conservation programs and is the go-to agency for many USDA records. If you’re new to working with USDA, your FSA team member will help you register your farm with a farm number. FSA staff can assist growers in filing their crop acreage report over the phone, by email and through virtual meetings. To locate a local FSA office, visit www.farmers.gov/service-center-locator.

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