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1 May 2023

1 May 2023

AHC President’s Report – April 2023

Welcome to our April report.  On the surface it looks quiet in the industry, but there is a lot of work happening behind the scenes.

AHC Fibre Forum
Preparations for the Fibre Forum are coming along well with a great range of speakers confirmed ready to shed light onto the Australian fibre industry.  The response has been great with bookings coming in thick and fast.  You can see further detail on our website or through this link – https://australianhempcouncil.org.au/fibre-forum/

 

Remember all AHC state association members are eligible for a discount when registering for the forum.

AgriFutures
Recently the AHC assisted AgriFutures again in collating and reviewing an industry report due for release next month which covers market opportunities in emerging industries including hemp.

Also, AgriFutures has released a report which includes links to the various variety trial reports for those who are interested you can find it on the AgriFutures website: www.agrifutures.com.au

Monthly market report
The AHC is on the lookout for a volunteer as author of the AHC monthly market report.  This entails collating overseas and local information on prices and trends of hemp industry products, such as seed and fibre in its various forms. I believe whoever takes this on would find it a most fascinating exercise and may well establish themselves as a national authority on Australian hemp markets.  For anyone interested please email info@australianhempcouncil.org.au.

AHC Subcommittees
In further development of the AHC structure, we will be launching this month the AHC Food, Fibre and Fodder groups.  These organisations are open to any interested stakeholders and will have a 3 – 5  member executive that will be tasked with policy development for their respective industry areas, in particular review and promotion of appropriate federal legislation supported by a well laid out business plan.  This is all part of an overall 4-year plan to bring about national legislative change to open the Australian hemp industry opportunities to Australian hemp farmers and processors. These organisations will be led by the following individuals:

AHC Fibre Group – Jaimie Milling (NSW)
AHC Food Group – Mick Anderson (SA)
AHC Fodder Group – Dr Bronwyn Blake (WA)

If you are interested in any of these areas and would like to contribute, for an invitation and further details email info@australianhempcouncil.org.au.


AHC State Monthly Reports

New South Wales – Jamie Milling
There has been a little bit of excitement in the hemp space in the recent weeks in NSW with a second variety trial planted at the Sydney Uni Research Station at Narrabri in early April. This involved the planting of up to 12 different hemp varieties to help further the development of sound strain knowledge for our regions. The first variety trial was heavily impacted by extreme temperatures in early December 2022. Jamie reached out to Guy Roth for an update, with all varieties planted having germinated and out of the ground.

Hemp Farms Australia – King Gee Variety

Harvesting has commenced at Hillston of approximately 200 ha of dual-purpose biomass crop. In the Wentworth area a grower has approximately 30-40 ha’s of dual-purpose King Gee close to harvesting. They are hoping to achieve 12 tons of biomass per ha and around 750kg’s of seed from the crop. This crop was planted in early October 2022 on flood irrigation using approximately 10 megalitres of water/ha.

The same grower apparently lost 5 ha’s of seed crop to birds just recently stripping the crop down in 2 days.

Northern Territory – Dominic Calder
The NT has had the first IHVT planting for the season go in at the Katherine Research Station so more information of the outcomes will follow in the coming months. The Food Futures Conference in Darwin in late May will be graced to have Bronwyn Blake presenting her research topic. The NT has also had some new grower interest which is a positive sign for industry here.

Queensland – Lauchlan Grout
Queensland has experienced a very wet month throughout March and the beginning of April with the majority of the FNQ hemp crops for both grain and fibre production having their sowing dates pushed back. 

Current projects involving processing plants for biochar and biomass are progressing well throughout Queensland with further updates being delivered at the upcoming Queensland Hemp Association Annual General Meeting. 

The QHA have entered discussions with our contacts at the local Department of Agriculture and Fisheries regarding the approval for hemp feed for livestock, i.e. whole plant, processed plant material, grain and or processed grain products. We received clear direction and have put together a strategic plan for approval. 

The QHA have circulated the upcoming Annual General Meeting agenda and have received a great amount of RSVP’s from government, industry, company members and individuals. We look forward to seeing our members in person and meeting new parties eager to get involved in the hemp industry here in Queensland. 

THA – Tim Schmidt
Pretty quiet in Tassie at the moment. Harvest is completed and yields were quite marginal.  Yet to learn of results on fibre harvests, although they were adversely affected by flooding earlier in the season.  

We have had fresh inquiry for supply of new season product recently which is encouraging.
We continue to keep in touch with the state growth department on the state legislative review.

South Australia – Mick Andersen – IHASA
SA has had some Hemp biomass crops cut, and some have been baled early. The recent rainfall has helped the retting process and delayed the baling of some of the crops. The yields of one paddock are much higher than we expected (around 8.3 tonnes/ha) suggesting the season has been favourable for hemp this year, with other thicker crops likely to yield over 12 tonnes/ha in comparison.

The IHASA Special General Meeting took place 12th April to amend the constitution with a three-tier membership now in place: Corporate ($500), Associate ($200), General ($50).

Nicola Centofanti MLC, the shadow minister for Agriculture visited Good Country Hemp and was very willing to help with any legislative changes required in SA parliament. Local member for McKillop Nick McBride MLC also visited and was excited for the potential growth of the hemp industry in SA, which is good to see the politicians backing this industry and coming to the table.


Thanks for reading and if you’re not already subscribed, join now to stay up to date with any new information regarding hemp around Australia.

From everyone at the AHC, thanks again and see you next month.