A question we get asked many times is: how do I become a hemp farmer? It’s a valid question, considering the booming hemp and CBD industry! Read on to learn about the basics of becoming a hemp farmer.
Step 1. Research, research, research!
Across the globe, governments have set their own regulations regarding hemp farming. Before delving too deeply into the specifics, take a moment to do some research. The most important question to ask is: is it legal to farm hemp for CBD cultivation in your region?
If the answer to this question is yes, then congratulations! You’ve completed the first step on your hemp journey.
Hemp can be grown for many different uses such as food, fiber, and animal feed. Each can require its own license, which is why it is critical to look into the local laws regarding hemp licensing in your region.
Step 2a. Have an existing farming operation
Do you already have land, tractors, seeding machines, sheds, wi-fi capability, and space to put a production facility? Great! You’re already way ahead of the game.
We recommend having at least 10 acres to begin outdoor farming, or 3 acres for indoor farming.
Don’t have an existing farm? No problem — skip to step 2b and read on!
Step 2b. Have the means by which to obtain land and farming equipment
This is a very critical part of the process. Firstly, you would need to obtain land zoned for agricultural purposes.
Once you have your land, your next step is to determine if you will be purchasing your farming equipment or renting it. As the hemp season is very short and mostly hands off, you may not need to own your own equipment. However, in the long run, owning can outweigh the benefits of renting.
Hemp needs to be dried, a process which requires drying sheds. This can be a converted shed or any other building that would enable you to hang hemp to dry, which typically takes about 3–4 weeks.
Once your hemp is dried, you can store it for approximately 1 year in airtight containers. It’s important to factor in a facility to store these containers.
After harvesting and drying, you can begin processing your hemp into CBD oil using a Greenheart CBD production facility. This would be supplied as part of the partnership program, so you needn’t worry too much about that.
Step 3. Licensing
There are a number of licensing requirements to grow and sell hemp products. This is a highly regulated industry and as such, you will be required to abide by strict rules and regulations.
More often than not, you will need a license to grow and a license to sell hemp products. These can be produced by the same agency, or sometimes completely unrelated agencies.
For example, in Ireland, you would need to apply for a license to grow hemp from the Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA). As for the license to sell hemp, you would need to obtain that from the governing body for this area in your region (Greenheart CBD would assist you in this research).
Step 4. Maintaining
Once you’ve finished sowing, there really isn’t that much to do. If you’ve opted for an outdoor operation, your drone will be doing the majority of the work of scanning your crops’ health and assisting with the removal of unwanted plants and weeds from the field.
The data from the drone will allow you to make educated decisions on adjusting water or grow conditions for your crop.
Step 5. Harvesting and drying
Hemp takes about 3 months to grow to maturity, but this will vary depending on the region it is grown and the chosen strain. Once it has reached its final stage of growth, you’re ready to harvest: this is where your owned or rented farming equipment will come in.
There’s multiple ways to harvest hemp. After completing our pilot test, we tested two popular methods of hemp harvesting and drying.
Machine harvesting and drying enables a farmer to process a bulk amount of hemp in a very short time. The top of the crop is removed by a stripper machine, loaded into a truck, and then taken to a facility to be machine dried.
A bark willow dryer blows hot air through the plant to dry it, manual rotating of the crop until it is at the correct moisture level is required. This can be done by machine too.
There is also another conveyor style drying machine available for drying crops like hemp.
Conversely, there is the traditional method of hang-drying. After harvesting the plant, it is hung to dry in a shed and allowed to dry naturally.
Through our first-hand testing, we learned that this method produced the highest-quality product and would be our first choice for our partner farms to maintain the same level of quality across all products.
Step 7. Storage and processing
After harvest and drying, you will have up to hundreds of kilograms of hemp. Storing this dried hemp in reusable food grade buckets maintains the quality of the crop as you begin to process it.
The dried hemp is cold-pressed by machines without any additives into plant based protein powder and oil.
This oil is used in the Greenheart wellness range which includes body oil and muscle balms, as well as the food range which includes the oil droppers and popcorn and other confectionery products.
With our research and development program, we can beta test new seed blends and product lines to add to our range, enabling you to create more hemp-based products!
Step 8. Testing
There are many regulations that state the amount of THC allowed in your product, and you will need to adhere to strict testing guidelines to stay under the amount in your region.
You can ask your food licensing organization to identify approved third-party testing facilities and send your product for testing there.
Step 9. Sell your product using Greenheart’s channels
Once your products are approved, it’s time for sale!
We have an already established sales channel and a customer base. By becoming a Greenheart CBD partner farmer, you have access to our branding, marketing, website, and dApp.
You can sell your product for FIAT or via the CBD token. After all is said and done, you can expect a 45% profit split that goes directly to you.
Step 10. Talk to us!
If you’ve checked off most of the above, you’re well on your way to being a Greenheart CBD partner farmer.
You don’t need to know much about hemp farming to begin — this is where our expertise comes in. The Greenheart team has already run a pilot hemp farming program and has tested multiple methods of farming, harvesting, storing, and processing hemp. This gives us hands-on experience to share with our partner farmers.
We’ll be with you every step of the way in terms of training and knowledge. So why not have a chat with us today?