Minister Didiza announces the opening of the HEMP permit application process
The Minister of Agriculture, Agrarian Reform and Rural Development, Ms. Thoko Didiza, wishes to announce the opening of the HEMP permit application process effective today, Friday, October 29, 2021. This follows the statement by HEMP as an agricultural crop under the Plant Breeding Act. , No. 53 of 1976. This law provides for the control of imports and exports of certain plants and propagating material, the maintenance of the quality of these plants and propagating material and the guarantee of the usefulness of their products for purposes agricultural and industrial.
It is important to point out that hemp and dagga are plants of the same genus, namely cannabis. However, commercial use of dagga remains prohibited under the Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act 140 of 1992.
The declaration of HEMP as an agricultural crop now allows the import, export, cultivation, sale and research of hemp in South Africa.
This is a step towards the development of the Cannabis Master Plan which aims to provide a general framework for the development and growth of the South African cannabis industry in order to contribute to economic development, the creation of jobs, inclusive participation, rural development and poverty reduction. Conservative estimates indicate that 25,000 jobs could be created in the various value chains.
We appreciate that various rural communities and farmers in South Africa have been planting hemp for many years. These farmers and traders will be prioritized to ensure that the marketing of hemp contributes to their socio-economic uplift. We are working with provincial and national departments to ensure that adequate support is provided to producers, including added value.
A call is therefore made to all interested producers, researchers, processors and manufacturers to apply for hemp permits. Application forms, guidelines, requirements, and guidelines are available on the department’s website, www.dalrrd.gov.za. Follow the link Plant production.