Gov. Noem Responds to New USDA Industrial Hemp Guidelines

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – The USDA has released new regulatory guidelines for industrial hemp, however, Governor Kristi Noem is committed to keeping hemp out of the state.

South Dakota is one of three states along with Washington D.C. where the manufacturing and processing of hemp is illegal.

Governor Noem issued a statement on Tuesday saying her position of legalizing industrial hemp has not changed. She feels that legalizing hemp will legalize marijuana by default. She points out that the new guidelines require the state to allow interstate transportation of legal hemp.

You can read her full statement below:

USDA’s guidelines are out, but my position on legalizing industrial hemp has not changed. I remain opposed to industrial hemp in South Dakota because of the impact it will have on public safety and law enforcement’s ability to enforce drug laws.

USDA does not preempt a state’s ability to adopt stronger requirements or prohibit production. South Dakota state law prohibits industrial hemp production, and that statute still stands. The guidelines do require the State to permit interstate transportation of hemp. My team is working to ensure we have proper procedures in place so this doesn’t become something that weakens our drug laws.

Conversations around hemp will continue, and I will continue to make the case that legalizing hemp will legalize marijuana by default.

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