Under the USDA-approved hemp licensing program, business opportunities in New Jersey are being further promoted by developing commercial markets for farmers and all qualified participants to produce, sell, and manufacture hemp. The organization of the legislation and the business/marketing infrastructure plan, in sync with one another, create an opportunity for long-term profit and success.
In August 2019, lawmakers in New Jersey enacted the Hemp Farming Act (NJHFA) which promotes and establishes guidelines for the cultivation, handling, processing, transport, and the sale of hemp and hemp commodities within New Jersey for commercial purposes (while still uniting in harmony with Federal Law). NJHFA, which repeals New Jersey’s previous hemp pilot program, essentially covers the 2018 Farm Bill (removed hemp from being listed as a Schedule l controlled substance and made it an ordinary commodity), and moves hemp forward by specifying protocols and procedures for its growth and processing. Two types of applications have been introduced for both growers and handlers. While New Jersey has not yet placed limits on the number of permits that will be issued, permit applicants must pass a thorough background check and must also be able to illustrate a prior history and experience within hemp cultivation.
New Jersey’s Hemp Program, officially coded at N.J.A.C. 2:25-1.1 et al, defines three distinct type of hemp professionals: a “grower,” a “handler,” and a “processor.” A hemp “grower” is defined as any person who cultivates hemp; a “processor” includes, but is not limited to, parties acquiring raw hemp materials and processing them into a product; a “handler” is “any person who possesses or stores a hemp plant on premises owned, operated, or controlled by a hemp producer for any period of time or in a vehicle for any period of time other than during the actual transport.”