Sardinia officials say new law will unlock potential for hemp sectors

According to the island’s regional council, a local law that was passed unanimously in Sardinia can play a strategic role in land reclamation through phytoremediation of polluted sites and boost hemp-based construction, bioenergy and other sectors.

Council members welcomed the measure they recently passed, suggesting that the new law, which regulates farming and processing, paves the way for rapid development of the local hemp supply chain while advancing a sustainable economy and encouraging young hemp entrepreneurs.

2 bills combined

The law, based on proposals from the Sardinian Action Party and the Five Star Movement, supports research, training, the construction of processing facilities and the introduction of advanced technologies for sowing, harvesting, storage and processing. The establishment of a crop monitoring center is also planned.

Only 600 hectares of hemp were planted in Sardinia in 2019, the last year for which figures are available. But local officials said a growing number of young entrepreneurial farmers want to establish themselves on hemp farms.

“There are a lot of young people involved (in hemp) who, in some cases, are converting family businesses,” said board member Alessandro Solinas. “It also allows the expansion of agricultural activity on uncultivated land.”

Pent-up entrepreneurship

The Council said previously unclear laws and regulations were bureaucratic, with excessive controls. This has hampered investment in the sector and made entrepreneurs hesitate.

The new law differs from Italy’s national hemp law because it includes an obligation to report seedlings as a measure to control crops and support police enforcement of cannabis laws, said Piero Manzanares, president of Sardinia Cannabis Association.

The region will maintain a database as a monitoring tool where stakeholders can communicate their intentions and indicate their plans to grow seeds, fibers or flowers, with the police having access to this information.

With reports of