6 Things You Didn't Know About Hemp
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Until recently, hemp was an area of the cannabis industry generally relegated to the back burner of the legalization debate. That changed last year with the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, which decriminalized growing hemp for American farmers beginning in their 2019 harvests.
All of a sudden, the tides have completely shifted for the global hemp industry and the place U.S. growers hold in it. While Canada and China remain the global leaders in hemp production for now, it’s only a matter of time before U.S. cultivation flowers into a major player in the world hemp market.
With that in mind, below are six of our favorite statistics about the hemp industry circa 2019, courtesy of New Frontier Data's The Global State of Hemp: 2019 Industry Outlook report.
1. The Global Hemp Industry Saw $3.7 Billion In Sales In 2018
That represents a 350 percent increase from 2017’s total of $820 million. China was the largest seller of hemp in 2018, accounting for about one-third of all global sales ($1.2 billion). The U.S. was second with $1 billion in sales, followed by Europe at $980 million and South & Central America at $220 million.
New Frontier Data attributes the growth primarily to Chinese textiles, European industrials, Canadian foods, and the U.S. hemp-derived CBD market.
According to the report, the global hemp market will reach $5.7 billion by 2020.
2. U.S. Hemp Seed Imports Have Fallen 84 Percent Since 2016
With the U.S. beginning to exert its force as a producer of hemp, it’s not surprising that imports would fall. Even so, just two years ago the U.S. imported an all-time high 39 million pounds of hemp seed, mostly from Canada. In the first half of 2018, that number was just under 7 million.
3. Colorado No Longer Has The Most Hemp Cultivation Acreage In The U.S.
Despite being America’s largest cultivator of hemp since 2014, Colorado now finds itself second on the list, with 21,578 acres compared to Montana’s 22,000.
Twenty-four states cultivated hemp in 2018, up from only 15 two years ago.
4. Europe’s Largest Hemp Producer Is France
According to the European Industrial Hemp Association, France cultivated over 42,000 acres of hemp in 2017, the most in Europe. France has consistently been the leading European hemp producer, with Estonia, Italy, Lithuania, the Netherlands, and Germany behind it.
5. China Controls 78 Percent Of The Global Hemp Consumer Textiles Market
Every major hemp market has developed its own specialization. For China, that specialization is consumer textiles. Total global sales in the segment were $1.08 billion in 2018, with China accounting for $854 million of those sales.
6. Canada Exports Nearly All Of Its Hemp To The U.S.
If you follow the hemp industry, you know that the most recent annual statistics from 2017 show Canada became the global leader in both hemp sales and cultivation. Canada’s hemp cultivation amounted to 137,000 acres over 2017, overtaking China. Canadian hemp sales totaled $100 million in 2018, an 11 percent increase year-over-year.
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