21,578 acres of hemp were grown in Colorado last year
On this page you will find Colorado hemp law along with a history of how Colorado hemp bills have progressed through the State capitol over the years. We also provide links to important information concerning Colorado hemp programs and state agency advisories or opinion letters.
The Colorado Department of Agriculture (CDA) regulates hemp farming and research in Colorado. Contact them for more information on hemp farming regulations and how to apply for a hemp cultivation license.
The act updates the laws governing Colorado’s industrial hemp regulatory program to align with the 2018 Farm Bill and to put the department of agriculture in a position to prepare and submit a state plan to the secretary of the USDA.
Status: Signed into law by Governor Polis on May 29, 2019
Section 1 of the act sets the annual registration fee that a wholesale food manufacturer that produces an industrial hemp product is required to pay to the department of public health and environment at $300, regardless of the manufacturer’s gross annual sales. Section 1 also authorizes the department to convene a stakeholder work group to study the regulation of industrial hemp products.
Status: Signed into law by Governor Polis on May 29, 2019
Sections 2 and 3 authorize local governments to charge a local licensing fee and adopt ordinances or resolutions regulating businesses engaged in the storage, extraction, processing, or manufacturing of industrial hemp or industrial hemp products if the ordinances or resolutions do not conflict with state law.
Submitting to the registered electors of the state of Colorado an amendment to the Colorado constitution concerning changing the industrial hemp definition from a constitutional definition to a statutory definition. Submitted as Amendment X
Status: Signed into law by Governor Hickenlooper on May 11, 2018
The bill requires the institute of cannabis research at Colorado state university – Pueblo (institute) to develop marijuana tracking technology (technology). The technology must include an agent that is applied to a marijuana plant, marijuana product, industrial hemp, or industrial hemp product and then scanned by a device.
Concerning the allowable uses of reclaimed domestic wastewater, and, in connection therewith, allowing reclaimed domestic wastewater to be used for industrial hemp cultivation.
The bill creates a group under the commissioner of agriculture to study the feasability of including hemp products in animal feed. The group includes a hemp producer, a hemp processor, a legal expert, a person from an institution of higher education who has studied hemp policy, a veterinarian, a livestock producer, and any other person the commissioner determines would facilitate understanding the legal, practical, or business considerations. The group will make recommendations by December 31, 2017.
Status: Signed by Gov. Hickenlooper on 3/30/17
Current law requires persons who wish to cultivate industrial hemp to apply to the department of agriculture for a registration. The bill adds a requirement that applicants to cultivate industrial hemp for commercial purposes provide the names of each officer, director, member, partner, or owner of 10% or more in the entity applying for registration and any person managing or controlling the entity. Applicants for a registration may be denied registration for up to 3 years if any individual or entity listed in the application was previously subject to discipline, or the individual or entity was previously listed by an entity that was subject to discipline. When a registration is suspended, revoked, or relinquished, a new application for registration may be denied for up to 3 years after the effective date of discipline.
Status: Signed by Gov. Hickenlooper on 3/23/17
In Colorado, water subject to a water right may be used for the purpose for which the water is decreed. The bill confirms that a person with an absolute or conditional water right decreed for agricultural use may use the water subject to the water right for the growth or cultivation of industrial hemp if the person is registered by the department of agriculture to grow industrial hemp for commercial or research and development purposes.
Status: Signed by Gov. Hickenlooper on 5/21/17
Concerning the creation of a program in the Department of Agriculture to regulate industrial hemp production. Introduced in the Senate on 4/1/2013. Summarized bill history. Download the text of SB13-241 as Introduced here (PDF file 45k).
Concerning the establishment of an industrial hemp remediation pilot program to study phytoremediation through the growth of hemp on contaminated soil. Introduced in House on 1/18/2012. Summarized bill history. Download the text of HB12-1099 as Introduced here (PDF file 28k). Download the text of HB12-1099 as Enacted here (PDF file 33k).
Status: Signed by Gov. Hickenlooper on 6/4/2012.
Concerning the recognition of industrial hemp as a valuable agricultural commodity, and, in connection therewith, urging Congress to clarify the federal definition of industrial hemp, facilitate domestic production of industrial hemp, and remove barriers to state regulation of the production of industrial hemp. Introduced in House on 4/23/10. Passed in House on 5/5/10. Introduced in Senate on 5/6/10. Passed in Senate as amended on 5/12/10. Summarized bill history.
Download the text of HJR10-1027 as Introduced here (PDF file 20k).
Download the text of HJR10-1027 as Engrossed here (PDF file 24k).
Passed in the Senate, but failed in the House Agriculture Committee after the DEA lobbied against it. Sponsored by Sen. Lloyd Casey.
The Colorado Hemp Production Act. Introduced January 25th and assigned to the Senate Agriculture Committee. The 1st hearing held February 9th and 2nd hearing held Feb. 16th. This was the first hemp legislation in the modern era and was sponsored by Sen. Lloyd Casey. Special thanks to the Colorado Hemp Initiative Project (CO-HIP) for pushing to get this bill introduced and all the work they did to try to pass it. Ultimateley this bill failed to pass in the committee due to negative testimony by the DEA, Denver Police Dept., Colorado Sheriffs Drug Watch International and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.