New York State Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced on Monday that applications are being accepted for the state’s Cannabinoid Hemp Program.
The Program involves licencing cannabinoid hemp processors, distributors and retailers.
“Opening the application process for businesses looking to be part of the growing hemp industry in New York State is a critical step in the process of expanding our economy and building back better. Licensing gives processors, distributors and retailers the ability to help ensure the hemp industry’s long-term viability,” Governor Cuomo said.
Additionally, the program sets quality control standards for the sector covering manufacturing, packaging and labeling. Testing by the US FDA last year revealed many cannabidiol products sold in the USA contained significantly less or more CBD than indicated on the label, and as we reported yesterday other more recent testing has revealed the same with CBD topical products.
Anyone processing, manufacturing or selling cannabinoid hemp in New York State will need to obtain a license from the Department of Health. Cannabinoid hemp products sold in New York must be manufactured using good manufacturing practices, tested by an approved third-party laboratory and properly labeled. Distributors outside of New York State must obtain a Cannabinoid Hemp Distributor Permit to sell products to licensed retailers in the state.
Regulations governing cannabinoid hemp products, including tinctures, oils, topicals, pills, capsules, food and beverages were published in October last year.
The Program will help boosts New York State’s reputation for quality cannabis products while also protecting consumers from sub-standard products that could potentially do harm.
Governor Cuomo has been a strong supporter of hemp for years – in 2015, he launched the state’s Industrial Hemp Agricultural Research Pilot Program. In 2017, he committed to positioning New York at the forefront of industrial hemp cultivation and processing in the USA.
That goal is yet to be realised. According to a Hemp Industry Daily report from last year, 29,985 acres were licensed for hemp production in New York State as at June 2020. This total was behind a number of states including Arizona, California, Colorado and a few others. However, the number of licensed acres doesn’t necessarily reflect what was actually cultivated.