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US hemp market grows to $291 million in 2023

Despite a slight decrease in open-field planting area, the market saw substantial increases in yields and values.

Hemp Seed Pile

The United States industrial hemp market reached a value of $291 million in 2023, marking an 18% increase from the previous year, according to the 2023 National Hemp Report from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). The growth is attributed to increases in both open field and protected cultivation, though the majority of hemp continues to be grown in open fields.

In open cultivation, the total planted area nationwide was 27,680 acres, a slight decrease of 2% from 2022. Despite this, the value of open-field hemp production surged by 22% to $258 million. The area harvested in open fields rose by 15% to 21,079 acres.

Floral hemp was the standout in open cultivation, with production increasing by 18% to 8.03 million pounds and harvested area up by 4% to 7,383 acres. The sector saw a significant value jump of 35% to $241 million, driven by a yield increase to 1,088 pounds per acre.

Grain hemp production in open fields also increased by 28% to 3.11 million pounds, although the harvested area for grain hemp decreased by 26%. However, the value of grain hemp dropped by 36% to $2.31 million.

Fiber hemp saw the most dramatic increase in production, up 133% to 49.1 million pounds with a 77% increase in harvested area. The average yield significantly increased, although the value of fiber hemp saw a sharp decline of 59% to $11.6 million.

Seed hemp in open fields surged in both production and value. Production grew by an impressive 414% to 751,000 pounds, and its value increased by 96% to $2.91 million.

Conversely, the sector for hemp grown under protection saw a decrease in production space by 33% to 3.24 million square feet, with the overall value of protected hemp down by 3% to $32.9 million. The production of floral hemp under protection dropped by 28%, although its value increased slightly by 4% to $25.8 million.

The value of hemp clones and transplants grown under protection increased by 18% to $870,000, showing a resilient segment amidst broader decreases.

This detailed snapshot of the hemp industry reflects the diverse and evolving nature of the market, highlighting significant growth in specific sectors like floral and seed hemp, while underscoring challenges in others such as fiber hemp and protected cultivation.

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