Under the bill, the Department of Agriculture would establish a hemp harvest certification program requiring the state verify that each licensed grower’s harvest is below the maximum .3% THC threshold. The harvest certification program prevents non-licensed growers or manufacturers from selling or transporting hemp to or in New Mexico. Growing hemp or manufacturing hemp products without a license would be a Schedule 1 offense, and transporting hemp without a harvest certificate is a petty misdemeanor that is subject to a $500 fine. New Mexico law enforcement may also seize the hemp for up to five days if the transporter does not have a harvest certificate. These ramifications are serious as a Schedule 1 violation would limit a business from obtaining a hemp growing license under the 2018 Farm bill or obtaining cannabis or hemp licenses at the state level.
The DOA’s proposed manufacturing rule sets out licensing requirements for facilities that test raw hemp, and persons that create new or improved hemp breeds. The application fees and annual fees for both types of entities is $500. The rule will become effective on September 1, 2019.