USDA expands hemp farming research as it looks to quantify output

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) says it will collect data on hemp fields and production from 20,000 farmers and ranchers, as the agency expands efforts to quantify the nation’s hemp output.

USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) is to collect the as-yet-unspecified data under authority of the Domestic Hemp Production Program, which is managed by the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service. The research, which is to be ongoing, is being shaped by a number of federal agencies.

As USDA deepens market intelligence for industrial hemp in the USA, the agency for the first time this year also has included the crop in a separate survey of farmers that is part of the national agriculture census.

For that survey, NASS is querying 36,000 producers from various agriculture segments for responses to support market projections. The farming census, carried out every five years, looks at a wide range of indicators to guide policymaking.

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