In January, we reported that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued its final rule establishing a domestic hemp production program, publishing it days before President Biden was inaugurated. The new Administration then instituted a “regulatory freeze pending review” with respect to published rules not yet in effect.
In a USDA Agricultural Marketing Service Bulletin issued on Monday, March 8, 2021, the agency stated “[a]s part of the transition, USDA and many other agencies took the opportunity to review new and pending regulatory actions. This is a routine process done at the beginning of new administrations to ensure longstanding as well as new programs are structured and resourced appropriately and to ensure programs are implemented to best serve their intended stakeholders.”
As such, the final rule will move forward as originally planned and will become effective on March 22, 2021.