Press Release: Colorado Produces First AOSCA (Association of Official Seed Certifying Agencies) Certified Seed

BROOMFIELD, CO – From the Colorado Department of Agriculture: In the race to develop a successful, viable hemp industry, Colorado is now home to the first U.S.-bred hemp seed to qualify as Association of Official Seed Certifying Agencies (AOSCA) certified seed. “This is an exciting time for the industrial hemp industry. It seems breeding, technology, and information advances are happening at the speed of light; this is a giant step for American hemp farmers,” said Duane Sinning, CDA’s Division of Plant Industry Assistant Director.

New West Genetics, Ft. Collins, Colo., submitted a variety trademarked as NWG-ELITE. The variety is the first U.S.-bred hemp seed to pass the Colorado Department of Agriculture’s hemp trials and qualify as AOSCA certified seed. According to their website, “NWG uses genomic technology and data-driven discovery to create large-scale, harvestable cannabis, greatly enhancing the sustainability of the industry and paving the way for large-scale product development….The large scale production of cannabis that we enable serves our mission of improving patient access and affordability and increasing options for farmers looking for rotational crops that offer a better return than other commodity crops.”

In 2016, the Colorado Department of Agriculture launched the first certified hemp seed program in the country to grow hemp across Colorado’s diverse growing conditions to discover which seeds would grow crops that fall within industrial hemp THC requirements. CDA Approved Certified Seed provides growers with the confidence they expect in seed quality. The program tests industrial hemp requirements set by Amendment 64 in the Colorado constitution, which closely mirrors the federal Farm Bill. Colorado state law requires that industrial hemp tests at or below 0.3% THC concentration on a dry weight basis. All varieties tested were accepted by the Colorado Seed Growers Association’s Variety Review Board and these varieties passed the THC validation trials.


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