This month’s Hemp Benchmarks price assessments for the most part showed stability compared to February. Relatively small downward price movements were observed in most of the tracked product categories, but there are rumblings from some members of our Price Contributor Network (PCN) that CBD demand is beginning to pick up again after growth slowed last year. A certified organic processor in Vermont reported that demand from both small buyers and larger brands increased “significantly” recently, with manufacturers of pet products accounting for a notable portion of the uptick.
Still, given robust inventories of CBD Biomass and extracted products, reports of increasing demand have not yet translated into significant price recovery. Rates for CBD Biomass and smokable CBD Flower were largely steady this month. Tolling and split arrangements appear to still account for the majority of transactions, rather than spot purchases. One Colorado processor stated to our analysts this month that they are charging $3 per pound to extract CBD from biomass and are “booked out two solid months,” with “split opportunities that could last … another several months past where we’re booked out with tolls.”
Prices for Crude CBD Oil and CBD Isolate both ticked upward this month, in part due to more USDA Organic product hitting the market. Additionally, at least some of the increased demand for said extracts continued to be attributed by market participants to demand for delta-8 THC.
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PCN members provided diverse accounts of demand for CBG, with some stating that it is increasing, while others characterized it as spotty. Prices for CBG extracts continued to fall this month, while rates for CBG Seeds and Clones rose.
Prices for CBD genetics were largely stable this month even as planting season approaches. For the most part, genetics providers interviewed by Hemp Benchmarks this year have not reported exceptionally strong demand, while some have offered promotions and discounts on their stock in recent weeks. The exception to mostly static prices for CBD genetics was a significant increase in the observed price for Non-Feminized Seeds.
Finally, trading for products containing minor cannabinoids – namely CBC and CBN – was also reported by our PCN this month, as were transactions for delta-10 THC. However, trading frequency was very low and Hemp Benchmarks is unable to provide price assessments for such products at this time.
2021 Growing Season Outlook
Early reports still point to a second year of declining hemp production in 2021, with growers downsizing and specializing in a tough market. Page 11
Delta-8 THC Latest
One hemp industry advocacy group pushes back on marketing delta-8 THC, intoxicating products as hemp; states take the lead in regulating the compound. Page 13
Parts of Midwest and Northeast U.S. forecasted to see wetter-than-average conditions leading up to planting time. Page 14
Federal Regulatory Updates
After brief pause, USDA Final Rule for hemp production goes into effect as scheduled; FTC reaches agreements with companies alleged to have been deceptively marketing CBD products, imposing fines on some. Page 16
2020 slowdown in CBD sales reported; new rules for shipping vape products will impact some hemp companies. Page 17
Numerous states report licensing applications for 2021 season lag behind last year’s; more states report 2020 harvest and yield data. Page 20
Canadian regulators approve first feminized CBD cultivar for production in 2021; European hemp industry group receives approval for study under U.K. Food Standards Agency. Page 28
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