Illinois Hemp License Application

How to apply for a Hemp License in Illinois

Industrial Hemp in Illinois

The Illinois hemp law has not only been passed, but also the regulations have been published, which means that it is the ready for its first growing season.

The public comment period for the new rules on Hemp expired on February 11, 2019, according to the latest edition of the Department of Agriculture’s Common Ground publication. 

Illinois’ Industrial Hemp Act goes into effect for the 2019 crop year. While the early adopters may reap some of the benefits, over the years hemp could become a common sight along corn and soybeans in the farmland of the state.

Section 5 of the Industrial Hemp Act defines Industrial Hemp as:

“Industrial hemp” means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis that has been cultivated under a license issued under this Act or is otherwise lawfully present in this State, and includes any intermediate or finished product made or derived from industrial hemp.

Let’s unpack what that means.

  1. cannabis sativa is hemp, but also…
  2. that cannabis sativa has no more than 0.3 percent dry weight of THC, and
  3. it has been cultivated under license, or otherwise lawfully present in the state of Illinois, and
  4. any other product made or derived from hemp

Got those four points?

The regulations include the following rules:

  1. No person may grow hemp without a license
  2. No person may handle hemp without a license
  3. All seeds, clones and transplants must be certified under AOSCA.
  4. minimum space of one-quarter acre for outdoor and 500 sq.ft. for indoor growing
  5. A completed application must be submitted to the state BEFORE growing

Recently, the state of Illinois also released its application requirements for hemp – they are as follows:

    1. The name and address of the applicant
    2. The type of business or organization, such as corporation, LLC,
      partnership, sole proprietor, etc.;
    3. Business name and address, if different than the ones submitted in
      response to subsection (a)(1);
    4. The legal description of the land area, including Global Positioning
      System coordinates, to be used to cultivate industrial hemp;
    5. A map of the land area on which the applicant plans to grow industrial
      hemp, showing the boundaries and dimensions of the growing area in
      acres or square feet;
    6.  Documentation to prove the land area is a farm as defined in Section 1-60
      of the Property Tax Code; and
    7. The applicable fee of $1,100.

If your canna business needs help with their Industrial Hemp License, please call our cannabis lawyers.


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Hemp Cultivation or Processing

Illinois’ Industrial Hemp Act requires a license for either cultivation (growing) the hemp, or processing (manufacturing) the hemp.

Cultivation of Hemp Under Illinois Law.

Section 10 of the Illinois Industrial Hemp Act provides for the requirements an application to get a license requires.  Basically, only three things are required under Section 10(b) of the law.  it provides three subparts:

(1) the name and address of the applicant;

(2) the legal description of the land area, including Global Positioning System coordinates, to be used to cultivate industrial hemp; and

(3) if federal law requires a research purpose for the cultivation of industrial hemp, a description of one or more research purposes planned for the cultivation of industrial hemp which may include the study of the growth, cultivation, or marketing of industrial hemp; however, the research purpose requirement shall not be construed to limit the commercial sale of industrial hemp.

Further, the Illinois Hemp Law goes on to require additional measures from cultivators of Hemp.  They must:

  • have one yearly inspection of the cultivation operation
  • test for not exceeding the required amounts of THC
  • Rules set by the Illinois Department of Agriculture for fees, signage and forms.
    Illinois Hemp License

    Illinois Hemp License

Processing of Industrial Hemp

Unlike the growers of hemp, the processors of hemp do not require a license – but only a registration.

Section 10 (b-5) provides that:

A person shall not process industrial hemp in this State without registering with the Department on a form prescribed by the Department.

Apparantly, after you have lawfully grown hemp – whether it comes from Illinois or not – you can begin processing that hemp into any number of useful items – but only after obtaining your registration with the state.

Conclusion of Hemp Cultivation or Processing

So while it appears that only the growers of hemp need a license, the processors of hemp into products like CBD concentrate still need to register.

If your canna business needs help with their Industrial Hemp License, please call our cannabis lawyers at (309) 740-4033.

As of the most recent update to this page on February 22, 2019, the Illinois Department of Agriculure has not yet started taking applications. Call us now to make sure that when the time comes – your business can get its license for industrial hemp.


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