Blue Forrest Farms started out the same way many farms do, growing hundreds of acres of kale, squash, and pumpkins. But it can now charge $35 to $40 per pound vs about $1 a pound for the kale that they used to sell. How you might ask? Blue Forrest Farms has since shifted its focus to a different cash crop: hemp.
Parija Kavilanz, a writer for CNN Business stated in her article, These hemp farmers are making a killing on the CBD industry
“The farm, which is located in Erie, Colorado, has dedicated 150 acres to growing hemp so far — and it’s still planting. ‘We’re now expanding it to 1,000 acres,’ said McKenzie Mann, Blue Forest’s production manager.”
After the Farm Bill was signed, the price of hemp went up slightly. This has caused an even larger surge in the CBD farming market. “Industry watchers say the price could stay at these levels or inch even higher if supply for CBD doesn’t meet the demand. The company declined to disclose its total sales of hemp last year but said the category is very profitable for the business and it expects its hemp sales to double this year.”
But if too many farmers get into the hemp business, the market could become saturated and prices could start falling, Mann noted. Last year, just over 78,000 acres of hemp was grown in the US, up from 9,649 acres in 2016, according to VoteHemp’s 2018 Hemp Crop Report.
Total sales for hemp-based products in the US were about $1.1 billion in 2018, and are expected to more than double by 2022, according to New Frontier Data, a market research firm focused on the cannabis industry.
Much of those gains will stem from demand for CBD products. But hemp can also be used for a variety of other products, such as fibers, clothing, rope and building materials.
“It’s important to take a longer-term picture of the hemp market,” said Steenstra. “Right now, CBD is the hot commodity and is a significant driver of the market and profit for farmers. But as an agricultural crop, hemp has significant market potential for grain and fiber.”