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ERO Hemp Transition FAQs

On February 11, 2022, Governor Whitmer signed Executive Reorganization Order 2022-1, assigning the regulation of processing, distributing, and selling hemp to the soon-to-be-renamed Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA). On April 13, 2022, the ERO will go into effect and the MRA will become the Cannabis Regulatory Agency (CRA). On this date, authority over hemp processors and handlers under the Industrial Hemp Research and Development Act (IHRDA) will shift to the new CRA.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) currently regulates hemp and will continue to oversee hemp cultivation after the ERO goes into effect.

At this time, the CRA has no plans to make changes that would materially affect the operations of hemp processors and will pro-actively communicate with licensees if that were to change.

The following FAQs are current as of March 2, 2022, and are subject to change.

  • Yes.  There will be no changes to your current license.
  • There are no plans to change fees at this time. The fees are established in statute (2014 PA 547), as amended.  Any changes would require a change in statute.
  • Both MDARD and the CRA are cognizant that hemp, a legal agricultural commodity at the state and federal levels, does not require the same degree of regulation that marijuana requires in all situations. MDARD has indicated since the beginning of the Ag Pilot Program that certain regulations are critical to ensuring products are safe for the public; processors should expect to see these regulations developed.
  • There is extensive crossover between the hemp and marijuana industries, specifically in the arena of cannabinoids. It is becoming more common for hemp and marijuana processors to use hemp-derived cannabinoids to synthetically produce psychoactive compounds such as delta-8 THC. Hemp-derived ingredients are being added to marijuana-infused products. Hemp products are being produced and sold in the same facilities already licensed by the CRA. The CRA already has authority to regulate the production, safety testing, labeling, and sale of psychoactive cannabis products, so the transition of authority will allow for better regulation of the ever-evolving cannabinoid industry.
  • Not at this time. Hemp is not a scheduled substance and is federally legal; however, the FDA has determined that hemp and hemp derivatives may not be used as additives in food products. Any product that does not contain marijuana must be manufactured in compliance with all applicable food safety rules and laws. As the legislative environment is continually changing, please monitor the Michigan Legislature website and federal legislation proposals for changes.
  • MDARD regulates animal feed and pet food under the Feed Law and its promulgated rules.  Hemp and hemp products are not approved feed ingredients and therefore cannot legally be used in animal feed or pet food.
  • Currently under PA 547, all hemp processing is regulated, and processors require either a hemp processor-handler license or a medical marijuana processor license.  
  • The CRA recognizes this concentrate issue exists and will work toward a solution. In the meantime, the CRA will not change the disposition for hemp products that have a THC content higher than 0.3%.
  • At this time, registered growers require a hemp processor-handler license or medical marijuana processor license to produce and/or sell intermediary, in-process, or finished hemp products including smokable flower.
  • Growing hemp requires registration with MDARD. The sale of propagative material currently requires an MDARD-issued hemp processor-handler license.  To retain authority over this activity – which is closely relating to growing – MDARD is working with the state legislature to create a hemp supplier license to regulate the sale and transfer of propagative material within 2020 PA 220, the Industrial Hemp Growers Act.