JULY 29, 2020: In a letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue today, Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley urged the agency to reconsider regulatory obstacles to Oregon’s hemp industry. With Courtney’s help and in collaboration with Vote Hemp, they were able to recast several of the biggest problems with the Interim Final Rules into sharper focus.
Chief among the concerns as echoed by farmers across Oregon and nationally:
- New requirement for DEA-approved labs
- Lack of representative sampling methodologies
- Need for wider range of disposal options for non-compliant crops
- Unworkability of the 15-day harvest testing window (Oregon rules provide for 28 days)
- Inflexible testing requirements for total-THC
The senators and Courtney agree that Hemp is on the verge of an agricultural boom that could drive economic recovery in many states, given the right regulatory framework. Their letter strongly urged Secretary Perdue to hold off on the implementation of the final hemp rules until legislative and regulatory obstacles are fully addressed.
Before submission, Courtney expressed her gratitude to their offices for the collaboration on the letter and ”the attention to detail both Senators Wyden and Merkley have given to the concerns of the industry.” Read the full letter here.
To learn more about the Agricultural Hemp Solutions (AgHS) Campaign to Align Federal Legislation and USDA Rulemaking with the Domestic Hemp Industry, please click here. A public comment period is imminent, and AgHS will keep the public informed on issues, participation and deadlines. To stay in step with the unfolding process, please join our mailing list here.