The 2022 hemp harvest in the US has dipped even further; from 36,925 in 2021 to close to 20,000 acres in 2022. This is according to a recent report by Colorado-based exchange-PanXchange. The story was first published by Hemp Today.
The PanXchange Report has given the following estimates for the three main hemp outputs this year:
- Flower: 6,400- 6,800 acres
- Fiber: 8,200- 9,100 acres
- Grain: 4,800- 5,000 acres
The very first hemp crop report was published by the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) in February, 2022. According to the NASS report, close to 500,000 acres of hemp were cultivated in 2019 but only 120,000 acres were harvested. This was attributed to a crash in the CBD market with CBD biomass prices coming down by close to 90%. Since then, farmers have harvested significantly less hemp than they produce, leading to a chronic oversupply of hemp. With the low production this year, farmers will be able to utilize oversupply from previous years and hence allow the industry to stabilize demand and supply forces.
The VP for Business Development at PanXchange, Seth Boone, had made a number of notable observations about this year’s hemp production. “Grain had the most success for repeat acreage with experienced growers, but struggled to find new growers in many areas,” he said. Boone also noted that hemp fiber has faced stiff competition from traditional crops that may be cheaper to cultivate.
These are however usual teething problems that any young industry is likely to encounter. The rigid laws that govern the hemp industry make things even harder for the hemp industry to thrive. That said, the full potential of hemp in medicine, industrial use, cosmetics, bioplastics, biofuel, building and construction, and food supplement is yet to be realized.
The Hemp Industry Association acknowledged in a recent newsletter that “markets for hemp biomass or hurd are not yet robust enough to power fiber hemp’s development as an industrial commodity.” This means that currently, the full potential of hemp biomass for industrial use is yet to be realized. But once the industry gets past the “experimentation” stage, demand for hemp is likely to soar and outpace supply.Hemp farmers and investors have every reason to remain cautiously optimistic.
USDA: National Hemp Report. Released February 17, 2022, by the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), Agricultural Statistics Board, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). https://downloads.usda.