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.
Current license holders are not effected for this season.
No plans to change fees. It has to go through legislation.
The change will be regulation on ingestible hemp products, but not GRAS (generally recognized as safe) such as hemp hearts and hemp seed oil.
Growing is still licensed and regulated through MDARD.
Review the full FAQ on the MRA website, here.
Note from Dave…
This came as a surprise.
We issued a letter expressing our concern during the public hearing. Since that time we have had the opportunity to meet with Andrew Brisbo twice, once on the iHemp Hour where you can watch.
The conversion of CBD to intoxicating substances is better suited to the MRA to regulate. MDARD does not have that experience. We have been assured that the fees will only be issued to cover compliance cost. The fees were established in legislation and will need to be changed through that process if needed.
We emphasized how we would like to see fees removed for fiber and grain. That is not likely to happen until we see Federal legalization of all Cannabis.
The outdoor Marijuana growers have expressed concern over having to compete with lower cost conversions for edibles and other products that can use hemp derived products. Michigan hemp farmers are concerned about competition from surrounding states with lower fees to grow.
Overall, we were glad to find that Mr. Brisbo is open to discussions about these topics.
One positive note for those selling CBD and hemp products online or through retail, they won’t be pursuing licensing for those outlets. The formulators and manufacturers of the hemp products must be licensed only.
Only time will tell how this all plays out. While we do need fair and competitive regulation to create a mature market, it is scary to see that handled by an agency who charges $6,000 for an application.
Below are links to the Executive Order and the FAQ’s. Let us know what your thoughts and concerns are with this change.