Industrial Hemp Cultivation

Industrial Hemp


The cultivation of industrial hemp, which is an agricultural commodity like other commonly grown crops, is regulated by AWM to ensure proper registration, crop planting, sampling/testing for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), harvest, and destruction activities. AWM also inspects nurseries that are growing industrial hemp for proper licensing and any invasive pests, ensures proper pesticide use at hemp operations, inspects hemp seeds for cleanliness and proper packaging, and verifies stormwater compliance.  The County has no jurisdiction for regulating agricultural odors or land-use matters in incorporated cities.


    California law requires that all growers and breeders of industrial hemp complete the registration process with the County of San Diego Department of Agriculture, Weights and Measures (AWM) prior to cultivation.  The Industrial Hemp Cultivation Program is administered at the state level by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). 

    Registration applications can be found on CDFA’s website, under “Forms”:

    All industrial hemp registrants must comply with California’s laws and regulations.  Any cultivation of industrial hemp without a valid registration is in violation of the law.

    Criminal History Reports and New Registration Requirements (April 2020)

In addition to the $900 annual registration fee to the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), starting July 1, 2021, an additional $200 License Fee will be required by AWM.

Sampling and Testing

    Industrial hemp crops may only be harvested following receipt of an official laboratory test report indicating that the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration is less than or equal to 0.3% and "Passed as California Industrial Hemp".

    To request sampling and testing, submit a Pre-Harvest Report to AWM at least 30 days prior to your intended harvest.

    Registrants must complete harvest within 30 days of sample collection and submit a Harvest Report to AWM within 72 hours after completing the harvest.

    Pre-Harvest and Harvest Reports can be found on CDFA's website, under "Forms":

    Submit Pre-Harvest and Harvest Reports to

    Sampling and Testing Outreach Presentation

    Sampling and Testing Requirements for Clonal Propagation

    For more information, contact AWM's Industrial Hemp Cultivation Program at 858-614-7786 or

Additional Resources

Pesticide Use on Industrial Hemp Outreach Presentation

CDFA California Industrial Hemp Program

CDFA Frequently Asked Questions

California Industrial Hemp Law

California Industrial Hemp Regulations

For information regarding cannabis, please refer to the County’s Socially Equitable Cannabis Program.