NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A8509
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the agriculture and markets law, in
relation to the inspection and sale of industrial hemp seeds, the
support of the industrial hemp industry and the inclusion of industrial
hemp as a crop
PURPOSE OF THE BILL:
This bill would modify the Agriculture and Markets Law (AML) to ensure
that industrial hemp will be considered an agricultural product and that
it be treated the same way as other crops and seed.
The bill would direct the establishment of an industrial hemp seed
certification program to ensure that authorized users of industrial hemp
seed have adequate protection with respect to trueness to variety,
germination, and concentration of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in
seed offered for sale. It also would authorize the commissioner to
collect industrial hemp data and use that data to promote best farming
practices for industrial hemp.
The bill would direct the Commissioner of Agriculture and Markets to
cooperate and consult with the New York State Urban Development Corpo-
ration with respect to the funding and support of industrial hemp
research and to establish a webpage and a Department one-stop shop toll-
free hotline for technical assistance concerning industrial hemp.
The bill also would direct establishment of an industrial hemp work-
group, composed of researchers and industry leaders to make recommenda-
tions concerning research, state and federal policy, policy initiatives,
and, as consistent with federal and state laws, opportunities for the
promotion and marketing of industrial hemp.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1 of the bill would make a declaration of legislative findings
Section 2 of the bill would amend AML § 136 (3) to add "industrial hemp"
to the definition of "agricultural seeds" and "crop seeds" for purposes
of AML Article 9-Inspection and Sale of Seeds.
Section 3 of the bill would amend AML § 301 (2) to add "industrial hemp"
to the definition of "crops, livestock and livestock products" for
purposes of AML Article 25-AA- Agricultural Districts Law.
Section 4 of the bill would amend AML Article 29 - Growth of Industrial
Hemp to add a new § 510 requiring the establishment of an industrial
hemp seed certification program.
Section 5 of the bill would amend AML Article 29 - Growth of Industrial
Hemp to add a new § 511 authorizing the commissioner to engage in indus-
trial hemp data collection and to use such data to promote best farming
practices for industrial hemp.
Section 6 of the bill would amend AML Article 29 - Growth of Industrial
Hemp to add a new § 512 requiring the commissioner to consult and coop-
erate with the New York State Urban Development Corporation regarding
the funding and support of industrial hemp research and businesses
involved in the processing and manufacture of industrial hemp products.
Section 7 would amend AML Article 29 - Growth of Industrial Hemp to add
a new § 513 requiring the commissioner to establish an industrial hemp
one-stop shop and website to provide information and technical assist-
ance to industrial hemp producers and manufacturers.
Section 8 would amend AML Article 29 - Growth of Industrial Hemp to add
a new § 514 requiring the commissioner to appoint a New York State
industrial hemp workgroup to provide recommendations concerning
research, current policy, policy initiatives, and promotion and market-
ing opportunities consistent with federal and state law and regulation.
Industrial hemp and products derived from it offer tremendous potential
for farmers and manufacturers in New York State. It has a wide array of
uses, including food, fabric, insulation, carpeting, paneling, cordage,
pulp, fiber board, compost, mortar, bedding, chemical feedstocks, and
The 2014 federal Farm Bill authorized state pilot programs for hemp
research. Based upon this and other changes in federal law, Governor
Cuomo signed legislation in 2015 authorizing ten sites for the growing
of industrial hemp as part of agricultural pilot programs. The Governor
signed further legislation in 2016 and 2017, expanding the scope and
breadth of this research.
This bill would ensure that industrial hemp is recognized as agricul-
tural product and is treated like other agricultural products. It would
also established a framework to develop standards and quality benchmarks
for industrial hemp seed developed in New York and facilitate and
support additional study of industrial hemp and products derived from
By supporting and expanding the research and study of industrial hemp,
New York State can become a leader in providing valuable knowledge
concerning the growth, cultivation, uses, processing and product devel-
opment that will benefit New York farms and businesses.
With New York in the forefront of industrial hemp research, New York
producers and manufacturers will be in an excellent position to capital-
ize on this emerging crop.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
This is a new bill.
This bill would take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK
2017-2018 Regular Sessions
June 17, 2017
Introduced by M. of A. LUPARDO -- (at request of the Governor) -- read
once and referred to the Committee on Agriculture
AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to the
inspection and sale of industrial hemp seeds, the support of the
industrial hemp industry and the inclusion of industrial hemp as a
The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-bly, do enact as follows:
1 Section 1. Declaration of legislative findings and intent. It is here-
2 by found and declared that industrial hemp is an agricultural commodity,
3 the domestic cultivation of which has the potential not only to generate
4 new jobs in agriculture and enhance the profitability of New York farms,
5 but to expand opportunities for processors and manufacturers producing a
6 wide array of traditional and new products using industrial hemp.
7 It is the declared policy of the state to become a leader in encourag-
8 ing and supporting research into the growth, cultivation, uses, process-
9 ing and development of industrial hemp and products derived from indus-
10 trial hemp to benefit its people and to support New York farms and
11 businesses to the full extent permitted by law.
12 § 2. Subdivision 3 of section 136 of the agriculture and markets law,
13 as amended by chapter 160 of the laws of 1983, is amended to read as
15 3. The terms "agricultural seeds" and "crop seeds" include the seeds
16 of grass, forage, cereal, field beans, and fiber crops, including
17 "industrial hemp" as defined in section five hundred five of this chap-
18 ter, or any other kinds of seeds commonly recognized within this state
19 as agricultural seeds, lawn seeds, and mixtures of such seeds.
20 § 3. Subdivision 2 of section 301 of the agriculture and markets law
21 is amended by adding a new paragraph l to read as follows:
22 l. Industrial hemp as defined in section five hundred five of this
EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
 is old law to be omitted.
A. 8509 2
1 § 4. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new
2 section 510 to read as follows:
3 § 510. Industrial hemp seed certification program. The commissioner
4 shall establish an industrial hemp seed certification program in the
5 department to, among other things, set industrial hemp seed certif-
6 ication standards and establish seed quality benchmarks to ensure that
7 the local hemp cultivars are developed to be well adapted for New York
8 state's climate and farm management practices and that they are stable
9 with respect to the concentration of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol.
10 § 5. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new
11 section 511 to read as follows:
12 § 511. Industrial hemp data collection and best farming practices.
13 The department, through the commissioner, shall have the power to
14 collect and publish data and research concerning, among other things,
15 the growth, cultivation, production and processing methods of industrial
16 hemp and products derived from industrial hemp. Based upon this
17 collection of data and research, the department shall work with the
18 cornell cooperative extension to promote best farming practices for
19 industrial hemp which are compatible with state water quality and other
20 environmental objectives.
21 § 6. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new
22 section 512 to read as follows:
23 § 512. Industrial hemp economic development. The commissioner shall
24 consult and cooperate with the New York State urban development corpo-
25 ration with respect to the funding and support of research concerning
26 industrial hemp and businesses involved in the processing and manufac-
27 turing of industrial hemp products.
28 § 7. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new
29 section 513 to read as follows:
30 § 513. Industrial hemp one-stop shop. The commissioner shall establish
31 a department one-stop shop hotline and webpage to provide information
32 and technical assistance to producers and manufacturers with respect to
33 the law and regulations surrounding industrial hemp for so long as
34 industrial hemp is subject to regulation under the federal or state
35 Controlled Substances Act.
36 § 8. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new
37 section 514 to read as follows:
38 § 514. Industrial hemp workgroup. The commissioner shall appoint a New
39 York state industrial hemp workgroup, composed of researchers, produc-
40 ers, processors and manufacturers, serving two-year terms, to make
41 recommendations concerning research topics for the industrial hemp
42 research pilot program, state and federal policies and policy initi-
43 atives, and opportunities for the promotion and marketing of industrial
44 hemp as consistent with federal and state laws, rules and regulations,
45 which workgroup shall continue for such time as the commissioner deems
47 § 9. This act shall take effect immediately.