Illinois producers, did you grow hemp in 2019? Are you interested in giving it a shot in 2020? With the end of the growing season here, there are many hemp growers who will be looking to find processors and end buyers for their product, according to a University of Illinois Extension news release.
As this is an emerging industry without a developed supply chain, there are a lot of holes to fill in. In response to this, University of Illinois Extension has created several production resources to help producers navigate this new industry, which can be found at go.illinois.edu/hemp.
First, Illinois Extension has created a “buyer/seller” database which will help connect hemp growers, processors and end buyers in the state. Information will be filled out using the “Industrial Hemp Buyer/Seller Form” and will then be posted to a document labeled “Industrial Hemp Buyer/Seller List.”
Note that this information will be public, and as such you are able to enter the amount of information you feel comfortable with sharing. This tool may take some time to grow but is meant to help growers across the state as a supply chain is developed. Similar tools have been shown to be effective in other states in which hemp production has been legalized.
Secondly, Extension has created a “Needs Based Assessment” for industrial hemp production in Illinois. Take time to fill out this assessment to help Extension develop research trials and educational programs. It can be found here: https://go.illinois.edu/HempNA.
For additional questions, contact Phillip Alberti, crop science educator with University of Illinois Extension in the College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences at firstname.lastname@example.org, 815-599-3644 or on Twitter @NorthernILCrops.