A bold initiative to grow hemp on a massive scale on the plains of eastern Mongolia moved a step closer to reality last week as startup HempMongolia LLC put in the country’s first official hemp grow.
HempMongolia is carrying out trials involving a high-CBD (12-14% CBD; 0.2% THC) variety it obtained from Spanish breeders, crossbred with Mongolian varieties to produce an F1 strain. “We want to see how it adapts to local soil and conditions.” Anar said.
The overall inaugural grow comprises two 8mX50m greenhouses the company installed near the city of Chinggis on the northern bank of the Kherlen Gol River. The hybrid trials are in one structure, while strictly Mongolian strains are being tested in the second. Irrigation is from deep wells that draw pristine water at ph5-ph6.5, pumped to a reserve basin from which it is piped to the greenhouses as needed. Local soil is being used with local manure as fertilizer.
“We are growing for seeds to use next year, and biomass for CBD extraction,” said Anar Artur, CEO at HempMongolia, a vertically integrated hemp agro enterprise that has been working closely with the Mongolian government to explore hemp’s potential for the country.
“Many breeders want to provide us with seeds now,” Anar said. “We are interested in some of the U.S. strains,” he noted.
Hemp Mongolia has plans to lease 20,000 hectares in eastern Mongolia for hemp farming. The company has spent three years building close relations with farming officials and agriculture stakeholders, advising the government on hemp’s potential role in the nation’s strategic plan for the farm sector.
HempMongolia got authorization from the Mongolian government to cultivate and process hemp last year.