April 16, 2019 -
Over the past few weeks Health Canada has been in touch with officials at various agencies of the Canadian and US governments seeking clarity on US import requirements for hemp grain and seed. It has been confirmed that the DEA is no longer issuing import permits for hemp grain and seed, but they have not yet received written confirmation that no other US federal authorization is required. Health Canada continues to seek clarity and written confirmation at all levels.
Recognizing the importance of US exports to the Canadian hemp industry and the brief window for seeding, Health Canada has decided that it will issue export permits without formal US authorization for the import (not required by Canadian regulations), and will include on the export permits the following text:
Please note that the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has confirmed that it no longer issues import permits for industrial hemp grain or seed.
Health Canada intends to issue export permits this week and will be in touch directly with affected licence holders in this regard.
In addition, to mitigate risks of shipments being stopped at the border, US officials have asked Health Canada to provide them with information about the shipments that have been authorized. Health Canada will connect with the affected licence holders to seek their permission to share the following data officials for each shipment with United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP): the shipper, quantity of shipment, description of product, expected date of shipment and port of exit from Canada.
It is hoped that this approach will help to bring resolution to the immediate issue of the export permit applications in the queue, while we work to confirm the position/requirements of the US government with respect to the import of industrial hemp.