Washington state is licensing hemp manufacturers for the first time, boosting opportunities for processors and extractors who want to sell out of state.
A law signed Friday by Gov. Jay Inslee establishes a new hemp processor registration and hemp extract certification under the state Department of Agriculture.
Washington will continue to ban hemp extracts in food, but the new license allows Washington processors to sell extracts to out-of-state buyers.
“This is a major victory for Washington’s hemp farmers,” said Seattle-based Sativa Rasmussen, an attorney at the international law firm Dorsey & Whitney.
Because Washington allowed but did not license hemp processors before, the number of extractors was limited, she said.
“Washington hemp processors have faced barriers to exporting their hemp products to various other states because a growing number of states require evidence of a hemp processor’s registration or certification,” Rasmussen said.
The measure allows licensed marijuana processors to get separate licenses to process hemp, though the product streams will have to be kept separate. Fees for the hemp-processing licenses will be set at a later date.