The Vermont Statutes Online
§ 561. Findings; intent
(1) Hemp has been continuously cultivated for millennia, is accepted and available in the global marketplace, and has numerous beneficial, practical, and economic uses, including: high-strength fiber, textiles, clothing, biofuel, paper products, protein-rich food containing essential fatty acids and amino acids, biodegradable plastics, resins, nontoxic medicinal and cosmetic products, construction materials, rope, and value-added crafts.
(2) The many agricultural and environmental beneficial uses of hemp include: livestock feed and bedding, stream buffering, erosion control, water and soil purification, and weed control.
(3) The hemp plant, an annual herbaceous plant with a long slender stem ranging in height from four to 15 feet and a stem diameter of one-quarter to three-quarters of an inch is morphologically distinctive and readily identifiable as an agricultural crop grown for the cultivation and harvesting of its fiber and seed.
(4) Hemp cultivation will enable the State of Vermont to accelerate economic growth and job creation, promote environmental stewardship, and expand export market opportunities.
(5) Section 10113 of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, Pub. L. No. 115-334 authorizes the growing, cultivation, and marketing of industrial hemp under a U.S. Department of Agriculture approved State program.
(6) The federal Agricultural Act of 2014, Pub. L. No. 113-79, Sec. 7606, codified at 7 U.S.C. § 5940, authorized states, subject to certain requirements, to implement agricultural pilot programs for the growing, cultivation, and marketing of industrial hemp, notwithstanding restrictions under the federal Controlled Substances Act. The pilot program was previously set to expire in 2020, but states may now operate a pilot program in 2021. The pilot program and 7 U.S.C. § 5940 are currently scheduled for repeal on January 1, 2022.
(b) Purpose. The intent of this chapter is to establish policy and procedures for growing, processing, testing, and marketing hemp and hemp products in Vermont that comply with federal law so that farmers and other businesses in the Vermont agricultural industry can take advantage of this market opportunity. (Added 2007, No. 212 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 2013, No. 84, § 1; 2017, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 2019, No. 44, § 1, eff. May 30, 2019; 2021, No. 47, § 10, eff. June 1, 2021.)