The Land Report

AG 2019

The Magazine of the American Landowner is an essential guide for investors, landowners, and those interested in buying or selling land. The award-winning quarterly is known for its annual survey of America's largest landowners, The Land Report 100.

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SH UT TERSTOCK A T PRESS TIME, only nine states — Connecticut, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, Ohio, South Dakota, and Texas — ban the cultivation of hemp, a resilient row crop that thrives in unamended soil and requires minimal trellising. Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, federal restrictions on the possession, sale, and transport of products made from hemp have been eliminated. This is credited with spurring interest in this potentially lucrative market segment. The hearty, high-yield crop resists mold, mildew, mites, and disease. The long-fibered plant can be used in everything from paper and oils to clothing and cosmetics. "The laws are always changing and are open to interpretation, but the 2018 Farm Bill went a long way to clarifying gray areas in the 2014 Farm Bill," says Sheri Wytcherley, an Oregon-based broker with Fay Ranches whose specialties include hemp properties. Hemp growers typically face fewer regulations than operators who cultivate marijuana. According to Wytcherley, irrigated land in Oregon costs roughly $10,000 per acre regardless of the crop. Hemp typically requires a more modest financial investment, but the harvested plant sells for much less, too. According to Wytcherley, the going rate for marijuana has dropped from a peak of $2,000 per pound of trimmed flower to $500 to $700 a pound. The same amount of industrial hemp fetches around $100. "With hemp, I don't see people who have expectations of becoming millionaires like there was a few years ago in the marijuana industry," says Wytcherley, who has brokered tracts for both crops to out-of-state investors. Whereas many states limit the acreage allowed on a license for growing marijuana, hemp typically has no such restrictions. "A lot of people who are licensed to grow marijuana are now moving to hemp licenses," she says. In addition, Oregon has placed a moratorium on its marijuana-licensing program. "Compared to marijuana, hemp is also cleaner to grow, using fewer plastics and less water," she says. — Lisa Martin e marketplace is getting vocal. Says Higgins, "Consumers are not only demanding more from their food, but they are asking more from their food producers, not just in the beef indus- try, but across industries, across sectors. ey're moving from a commodity busi- ness to a specialized business. It's created a lot of opportunities for producers big and small and across multiple indus- tries. So, this is a story, I would say, that's relevant, not just for the large landown- ers, not just for the big operators, but for those of all sizes." — Eric O'Keefe Hemp SHERI WYTCHERLEY FAY RANCHES 35 L ANDREP ORT.COM AGRICULTURE 20 19 | e LandReport

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