How Much US Farmland Should Be Dedicated to Hemp Crops?
According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, Google searches for CBD and hemp have risen steadily since 2014. The growing public interest, coupled with the passage of the 2018 farm bill, led to an agricultural boom in hemp farming across the United States in 2019 resulting in a massive glut and crashing prices. Subsequently, U.S. acreage dedicated to hemp crops in 2020 fell by nearly 60 percent.
Operating under the assumption an average bottle of CBD contains 1,500mg, some industry leaders believe even fewer acres will be needed to meet 2021 production needs.
“If we go with 1,500mg per tincture, it means we would only need less than 3,000 acres for the entire CBD market in the U.S. That’s shocking,” said Julie Lerner, chief executive officer at PanXchange, a provider of benchmark pricing for the U.S. hemp industry.
Lerner, while speaking at a Hemp Industries Association Zoom webinar, used Charlotte’s Web as an example to effectively highlight her case. In 2019, Charlotte’s Web reportedly utilized 862 acres of land for hemp cultivation. Lerner believes this was an overzealous approach.
“For $95 million revenues for Charlotte’s Web, you need only 57 acres,” she said. “Charlotte’s Web alone has an inventory build of 30,000 kilos of distillate. That’s a massive number of inventory.”