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Industrial hemp essentially banned in SLO County, Farm Bureau says 

From the San Luis Obispo County Farm Bureau:

–On Tuesday, May 5, San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 to enact severe restrictions on industrial hemp cultivation in SLO County. Only Supervisor Bruce Gibson voted against the ordinance. The nearly four-hour-long discussion resulted in significant revisions to the public hearing draft that had been presented to the public.

New restrictions on industrial hemp include:

  • 400 acre site minimum for outdoor cultivation,
  • 5 acre site minimum for indoor cultivation,
  • 1 mile setback from Village and Urban Reserve Lines,
  • 2,000 foot setback from property lines,
  • No exceptions can be granted through a Minor Use Permit,
  • Outdoor grows are limited to Ag and Rural Lands land use categories,
  • Cannot be grown in hoop houses (other crops are still allowed),
  • Only hemp transplants inside a greenhouse can be grown in the Residential Rural land use category (immature plants with no odor), and
  • Hemp cannot be grown in the Edna Valley American Viticulture Area.


While the board’s findings stated “the proposed amendments to not constitute a de-facto prohibition” on hemp cultivation,” there are now very few sites in the county where hemp can be grown. For example, if someone has a 400-acre square site, the new restrictions would allow hemp to be grown on less than one acre in the middle of the farm.

Watch video of the May 5 meeting (hemp is Agenda Item 22) by clicking here. Read comments submitted by SLO County Farm Bureau by clicking here.



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