South African Province Awards 660+ Hemp Licenses

The South African province of KwaZulu-Natal recently granted 664 licenses to cultivate, store, and transport industrial hemp plants containing up to 0.2% THC content.

Full story after the jump.

The South African province of KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) in October granted 664 licenses to cultivate, store, and transport industrial hemp, the South African reports. Under the program, hemp plants can contain up to 0.2% THC. The permits were awarded by the KZN Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) during the Cannabis Expo and Conference held in the province.

KZN Premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube said the expo and conference marked a “new era for the cannabis sector in the province” and noted that the DARD has set aside 47 million rand (~USD$2.4 million) for cannabis research and that about 10 million rand (~USD$526,000) would be used to “assist farmers in cannabis production and hemp permit applications.”

DARD MEC Super Zuma said the agency has “ensured a smooth process” for hemp permit holders and “covered all their costs.”

“We are winning the fight to alleviate poverty and unemployment and we are extremely proud of the ongoing collaborative work that continues behind the scenes, and I must say all our collaborative efforts have yielded fruit.” — Zuma via the South African 

Sphelele Shezi, a permit recipient, told the South African that she applied for a permit in July and plans to extract hemp oil to use in her company’s hairspray. 

“This permit will allow my business to grow,” she said in the report, “and I have a vision of owning a manufacturing plant which will open up job opportunities.” 

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