Midwestern Hemp Database and Cultivar Check Programs

Industrial Hemp Updates

Midwestern Hemp Database and Cultivar Check Programs

April 8, 2021

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) is assisting Michigan State University, Illinois Extension, and other participating institutions by distributing the following information concerning the Midwestern Hemp Database Program and the Cultivar Check Program. Hemp growers participating in these programs assist in gathering cultivation data that will provide regional insight into performance and cannabinoid development in industrial hemp varieties. Growers participating in the Midwestern Hemp Database Program submit information and compliance monitoring samples for varieties they choose to cultivate, while the Cultivar Check Program provides growers specific seed varieties to cultivate, report on, and sample.

Information on applying for these programs is provided below. If you are accepted into either program, you still must follow all state laws regarding hemp cultivation. Only registered industrial hemp growers can participate in these programs. If you are not a registered hemp grower in Michigan, find the application here. Official regulatory samples for THC compliance still must be collected by MDARD at the usual cost to the grower. Hemp growers must notify MDARD no earlier than 30 days before their anticipated harvest date, and no later than 20 days prior, that they need preharvest sampling to be performed, by submitting an online sample request form. In addition, growers can only sell harvested hemp to processors licensed either by MDARD or the Marijuana Regulatory Agency.

MDARD encourages hemp growers to consider applying for either program. More data on cultivation practices and performance will help guide the industry on variety selection. In addition, states will be able to utilize the data to develop sampling protocols that could lessen the need to collect preharvest regulatory samples for varieties proven to have consistent, compliant THC testing results.

Midwestern Hemp Database: 2021 Applications Open

Are you curious about variety performance in industrial hemp across the region? Would you find value in a publicly accessible variety evaluation tool? What about receiving significantly discounted cannabinoid testing in exchange for data sharing via university and private partnerships? If the answer to any of those questions is yes, read on!

The Midwestern Hemp Database is a collaboration between land grant institutions and private laboratories in the Midwest. The goal of this project is to provide regional insight into agronomic performance and cannabinoid development of industrial hemp varieties. In short, participation in this program provides an exciting opportunity to receive significantly discounted cannabinoid profiling at $35 per sample. This project is made possible through an extremely generous partnership with several private laboratories Rock River Laboratory, Inc., Pride Analytics and Consulting (Wisconsin), and ACT laboratories (Illinois).

In 2020, more than 130 hemp growers participated in this project. Results from the 2020 growing season are available at go.illinois.edu/MHDReport. Links to variety trial reports from partnering universities may also be found in the 2020 report. To determine your eligibility, please read the attached project overview. To participate in this project, please fill out the online survey here. Prospective participants will be alerted of their inclusion into the program soon after submitting applications. The application period closes on July 16, 2021

MHD Cultivar Check Program

Are you an experienced hemp grower with a track record of success? Interested in conducting on-farm trials where seed and testing costs would be covered by a collaborative multi-state university research program? If so, keep reading for an exciting opportunity!

Building off the work done in 2020, the MHD Cultivar Check Program seeks to collect, analyze, and share data on cultivar performance and laboratory analysis of chosen “Good Potential” cultivars (go.illinois.edu/HempReport). Twenty Midwestern (IL, IN, MI, and WI) hemp producers will be chosen to grow a selected subset (4-5) “Good Potential” CBD and CBG dominant cultivars during the 2021 growing season for research purposes.

Growers may be expected to sign Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs) for selected cultivars based on agreements with seed providers. For on-farm trials, our team will supply seed, shipping materials, and cover costs of cannabinoid testing. Growers will submit management and performance data via the SeedLinked platform, as well as flower samples for cannabinoid analysis by partnering laboratories. Specific project details can be found in the attached document.

To be considered for participation in the MHD Cultivar Check Program, apply here by April 16 to allow for timely dissemination of materials. Qualified growers will be selected on a first-come, first-served basis and will receive invaluable, firsthand experience growing cultivars that have shown promise in the region.  

If you have any questions or are interested in participating in this program, please contact Phillip Alberti at palberti@illinois.edu or 217-300-7392.