Industrial hemp laws, regulations, and restrictions
Learn requirements around producing hemp in Louisiana
By law, industrial hemp includes all plant parts and varieties of the cannabis plant and any part of the plant cultivated or possessed by an industrial hemp licensee, with a total THC concentration level of not more than 0.3% on a dry weight basis.
Non-consumable industrial hemp is any product derived from industrial hemp that does not contain any cannabinoid, including cannabidiol, and is not intended for consumption or topical use.
Consumable hemp product means any product derived from industrial hemp that contains any cannabinoid, including cannabidiol, and is intended for consumption or topical use. This shall include commercial feed, pet products, and hemp floral material.
The federally defined limit for THC is no more than 0.3% Total THC. In Louisiana, LDAF samples and tests industrial hemp to evaluate Total THC concentration levels prior to harvest.
THC is measured post-decarboxylation, which is the conversion of delta-9 THC-a into delta-9 THC with heat. This is commonly referred to as Total THC. The values for THC and THCa (adjusted for molecular weight conversion) are added together. Final answers are subject to a further adjustment for uncertainty to determine if the legal definition of hemp has been met. The uncertainty value used in Louisiana is 0.104%. Hemp samples are dried and ground into a homogenous powder. Moisture in the ground sample is analyzed in an automated halogen moisture analyzer, and the Total THC result is mathematically adjusted to represent the foliage at a specified moisture. The homogenous sample is extracted using methanol and analyzed by HPLC-UV technology which chemically separates and quantitates the THC and THCa.
If hemp has more than 0.3% of THC, it is considered marijuana and is not in compliance. This will result in LDAF issuing a stop order. Anything testing over 1.0% THC will result in LDAF taking further regulatory action. See “Hot” Hemp Do’s and Don’ts .
Laws and requirements
It is legal to grow industrial hemp in Louisiana if licensed. LDAF regulates the production, handling, and processing of non-consumable hemp products.
Medical marijuana production and the processing of consumable hemp products are regulated by the Louisiana Department of Health .
Businesses or individuals interested in selling CBD products must also be registered through the Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control .
For industrial hemp growers and sellers:
Licenses cost $500 each, and renewals are due yearly by November 30.
Refer to Section 1465 of the Industrial Hemp Law for licensing requirements.
Hemp variety designation list
LDAF Industrial Hemp Program Variety Designation List as of Oct 1, 2023.
There is no limit to the number of licenses Louisiana issues, and there is no minimum number of production acres to be a licensed grower. You can grow industrial hemp plants in your yard as long as you’re licensed.
Holders of Permanent Resident Cards (also known as Green Cards) are eligible for industrial hemp licenses.
The 2018 Farm Bill legalized the commercial production of hemp and authorized states to submit plans to administer hemp programs. Act 164 of the 2019 Louisiana Legislative Session, now known as the Industrial Hemp Law, was signed by Governor John Bel Edwards on June 6, 2019, which recognized industrial hemp as an agricultural commodity in Louisiana. The Law authorizes the commercial cultivation and processing of hemp in Louisiana. The Law also requires the LDAF to license and regulate hemp in Louisiana. LDAF began the hemp licensing application process in early February 2020.
As a result of Act 336 of the 2021 Regular Legislative Session, LDAF is no longer authorized to license or regulate processors of ‘consumable’ hemp as defined by R.S. 3:1481. Anyone interested in processing consumable hemp should go through the Louisiana Department of Health .
Also, see Act 462 of the 2022 Regular Legislative Session .
Also, see Industrial Hemp Law RS 3:1461 (June 2019).
Also, see Louisiana Industrial Hemp Rules & Regulations (September 2022).