Economics and Marketing

This article was first published on Dr. Shawn Conley’s Cool Bean website on February 7, 2018. A portion of the article has been archived here for your convenience.


Authors: Shawn P. Conley, John Gaska, Adam Roth, Cheryl Skjolaas, Erin Silva, Loretta Ortiz-Ribbing, William Barker, and Patrick Robinson


Economics and Marketing

Further marketing information can be found at:
Alberta Agriculture and Forestry

Who will buy my hemp if I grow it?
The market is limited and constantly in flux for hemp in the U.S. due to many different factors. We encourage interested individuals to contact a hemp trade association to learn more about marketing opportunities.

How much can I sell my hemp for?
Prices for hemp grain are widely fluctuating in the U.S. specifically due to the infancy and constant development of the industry. According to the Alberta Agriculture and Forestry Department, the average hemp grain price in 2015 in Alberta was $0.74 per pound. Typical returns for hemp grain in the U.S. have been between $0.40-0.70 per pound for conventional, and $0.75-1.00 per pound for organic. Due to the volatile nature of the current U.S. hemp industry, growers are advised to secure a contract before they plant.

What is the cost per acre?
The Alberta Agriculture and Forestry Department reported an average total production cost for hemp seed grown on dryland in 2015 at $409 per acre. With an average grain yield of 1,074 pounds per acre, that amounted to $0.38 per pound of hemp seed produced.

In Minnesota, hemp seed prices are widely variable based on the variety and the source. Imported seed has additional shipping and customs fees above and beyond domestically produced seed. Farmers should also consider the possibility of needing to buy or rent new harvesting equipment if they grow hemp. In 2016, hemp producers in Minnesota reported costs per acre between $970-$2,500 per acre. In 2017, initial reports indicate production costs of between $300-$600 per acre (does not include land cost).

Other questions that may be addressed by the new rules:

  • Who will process my hemp in WI?
  • Where are processors located in WI?
  • Can I export hemp product to other countries?
  • Can I sell grain or fiber to other states?
  • Can I sell seed to other states?
  • Are there any grants that I can get?
  • Can I grow hemp under contract with someone else?


Can I feed hemp to my livestock?
Hemp is not currently an approved ingredient for commercial animal feed. Therefore, hemp material cannot be sold as animal feed.