Industrial hemp continues to receive a lot of attention in the United States of America with a projected annual revenue growth rate of 18.4 percent by 2022. The momentum industrial hemp has gathered in the past few years has made it the ‘new lucrative crop’ for people to grow. However, many farmers have jumped into hemp farming without first obtaining a realistic economic analysis of hemp farming. In this paper, we seek to review and explore the economic opportunities and challenges of hemp production as a useful guide for reducing risks and maintaining profitability for farmers in North Carolina. Our reviews suggest that there are huge knowledge gaps between the 'promised' benefits (financial incentives) of hemp and what it will take for farmers to reap the financial benefits thereof. Therefore, more scientific research on sources of production inputs, basic agronomic practices, post-harvest processing, supply chain management, policies, and legal framework to guide production and marketing is needed to collect data specific to the hemp industry in North Carolina. Farmers in North Carolina have higher risks of failing and losing their investment and farms due to attempts to grow a new crop (hemp). Only significant effort to address the above missing gap in knowledge can guarantee access to the economic potential as well as plan and implement mitigation measures to the threats facing this emerging industry.
Quaicoe, Obed; Asiseh, Fafanyo; and Isikhuemhen, Omoanghe S.
"The Business of Hemp in North Carolina: Where the Rubber Meets the Road,"
Journal of Agricultural Hemp Research: Vol. 1:
2, Article 3.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.murraystate.edu/jahr/vol1/iss2/3