Backing Tasmania’s Industrial Hemp Industry

Jane Howlett, Minister for Primary Industries and Water

Regulation of Tasmania’s nation-leading industrial hemp industry will be simplified under the Industrial Hemp Amendment Bill 2023 tabled in Parliament today.

Minister for Primary Industries and Water, Jane Howlett, said the Industrial Hemp Amendment Bill demonstrates the Government’s commitment to work with the hemp industry to support future growth and streamline regulation.

“An important part of our 2030 Strong Plan for Tasmania’s Future is support for our agricultural sector so that it can continue to prosper,” Minister Howlett said.

“This Bill will support future industrial hemp industry growth by including horticultural use as an explicit licence purpose.

“This will mean that industrial hemp straw can be used as a mulch, giving growers an additional income stream.

“There will also be improved clarity, efficiency, and transparency for licensees under these proposed amendments.

“The proposed amendments will also provide consistency with existing legislation in relation to police powers, the assessment of suitability of applicants, and definitions for fit and proper persons and responsible officers.

“Changes to the Industrial Hemp Regulations 2016 will also clarify the assessment process for special research licences to ensure beneficial research is delivered to support growth of the industrial hemp industry.”

Minister Howlett said a comprehensive review of the Industrial Hemp Act 2015 found that most issues raised by stakeholders can be addressed by updating policy and licence conditions to better inform licensees of their obligations and ensure they can maximise the use of their crop. This work is underway.

“Our agriculture industry makes a huge contribution to the Tasmanian economy and that is why the government has committed to support the hemp industry to advocate nationally for complementary pathways, compliant with the Commonwealth Drug Regulatory Scheme, to potentially allow for greater use of non-medicinal products from industrial hemp such as extracts and resins,” Minister Howlett said.

“Industrial hemp is making an important contribution to the sustainable growth of the farm gate value of Tasmanian agriculture to $10 billion by 2050.”

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