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Industrial Hemp

Para acceder a los pdf traducidos al español de las siguientes leyes y regulaciones haga clic aquí.

Industrial Hemp

Public Hearing on Proposed Amendments to the Industrial Hemp Act.

March 13, 2023
Registration – 12:00 pm - Hearing - 1:00 pm
John R. Block Auditorium
Illinois Department of Agriculture
State Fairgrounds
801 E. Sangamon Avenue
Springfield, IL 62702

This report is due by December 1, 2022

The 2022 Virtual Hemp Summit was held on February 22, 2022, watch an archive of the summit.

USDA Final Rule and USDA Approved Illinois Hemp Plan

Illinois Hemp Updates and Current Status - January 2022

IDOA recently submitted a revised Hemp Plan to USDA for approval, based on the changes to the Final Rule. The next step is for IDOA to  begin working on administrative rule changes, which will follow the process outlined by the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules and the Illinois Administrative Procedure Act.

Key changes and additions to the Plan include: the expansion of institutions eligible to conduct hemp research, hemp remediation and disposal methods and requirements, laboratory testing requirements and specifications,  inspection and sampling details, and provisions for negligent violations of the rules.

This page will be updated throughout the administrative rulemaking process.  The rulemaking process provides opportunity for public comment and feedback. IDOA is committed to revising the rules in a way that meets USDA requirements while also addressing the specific needs and concerns of Illinois growers and producers. 

Please see the sections below for more information on the Federal Government and Hemp and Hemp's History in Illinois.

What is Hemp

Hemp, or industrial hemp, is a variety of the cannabis sativa plant. While hemp and cannabis both derive from the cannabis sativa species and contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), hemp and cannabis are distinct strains with different compositions and uses. Hemp can be made into a variety of items, including clothing, paper, animal feed, and textiles.

Illinois Hemp: A Brief History

In 2015, the Industrial Hemp Pilot Program became effective in Illinois law. This statute allowed for researchers and institutions of higher education to grow hemp for educational and research purposes. This Pilot Program was allowed under the 2014 Federal Farm Bill. The Illinois Department of Agriculture also promulgated Rules related to this program, which can be found at 8 IAC 1100.


In August 2018, the Industrial Hemp Act became effective in Illinois. This Act expanded the growing and processing of hemp outside of higher education and researchers, and allowed for farmers and others to plant and process hemp in Illinois. The Illinois Department of Agriculture's Rules on that program can be found at 8 IAC 1200. Those Rules became effective in April 2019.


In November 2020, Illinois, through the Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA), submitted a Hemp Plan to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), which was approved. In March of 2021, a new set of rules was published by the federal government, which required revision of Illinois's hemp plan. IDOA has submitted a new Hemp Plan, which USDA has approved.  IDOA plans to commence the administrative rulemaking process in early 2022 to update our adminitrative rules in accordance with the Plan.


The Federal Government and Hemp

In December of 2018, the 2018 Federal Farm Bill (also called the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018) was passed by the United States Congress. This Bill created the Domestic Hemp Production Program, which allowed for hemp to be grown outside of a research setting. Under the 2018 Farm Bill, states are required to either submit their hemp plans for approval to USDA or allow USDA to directly regulate hemp in that state. Illinois opted to create its own Hemp Plan. The original Illinois Hemp Plan was codified in the Administrative Rules.


In November 2019, USDA issued an Interim Final Rule, which contained rules and regulations intended to be in effect until final regulations were issued. States intending to have their own Hemp Plans were asked to submit a Hemp Plan prior to the publication of the Final Rules. Through the Department of Agriculture (IDOA), Illinois submitted and received approval for its Interim Final Rule Hemp Plan in November of 2020. 

In March of 2021, the Final Rule was published, which required revision of Hemp Plans submitted under the Interim Final Rule. IDOA's recently approved Hemp Plan is compliant with the changes made from the Interim to the Final Rule. You can learn more about the Final Rule and other USDA hemp information by going to their webpage.


Please click here for the USDA's position on seed importation: Seed Importation Update from the USDA


Additional Policies and Guidelines


Forms and Applications

2022 Hemp Cultivator Final Report (Due December 1, 2022)

Department Approved Testing Laboratories:

Lab Name City Phone
ACT Laboratories, Inc. Morton, IL (517) 278-9333
Grace Analytical Laboratory, Inc.  
Berkeley, IL (708) 449-9449
LK Pure Labs LLC Sparta, IL (618) 443-6685
Origo Labs, LLC Chicago, IL (872) 870-0500
SC Laboratories California LLC Santa Cruz, CA (866) 435-0709