Industrial Hemp Variety Trials: Results from the Manjimup trial site for the 2021-22 growing season

  • 26 pages

  • Published: 22 Dec 2022

  • Author(s): Shahajahan Miyan

  • ISBN: 978-1-76053-340-3

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AgriFutures Australia’s Emerging Industries Program has determined that industrial hemp (Cannabis sativa L.), i.e. low tetrahydrocannabinol hemp, is an industry with high growth potential. Industrial hemp has a diverse range of uses, including textiles, stockfeed, pet bedding, human food (seed) and building materials. However, to meet demand, there needs to be an increase in the scale of production.

Identified as a top priority in the Australian Industrial Hemp Strategic RD&E Plan (2022-2027) was the establishment of a nationally coordinated industrial hemp variety trial that covers the current and future major production environments.

The Industrial Hemp Variety Trials (IHVT) program aims to provide Australian hemp growers with independent information about the performance of industrial hemp seed varieties suited to specific geographic locations within Australia. The IHVT is a three-year project, with year one including sites in the Northern Territory (1), South Australia (2), Tasmania (1), Victoria (1) and Western Australia (2).

Year one results from Manjimup, Western Australia indicate there are significant differences in both vegetative and reproductive yield attributes among the hemp varieties tested, and that quality seed impacts varietal performance. To ensure we are comparing like with like, industry has recognised the importance of good seed quality for trials, but also ultimately for hemp production at a commercial scale. In this region, year one data showed Ferimon 12 produced the highest grain yield (1249 kg/ha) and dry matter at harvest (8196 kg/ha). However, as this is just one season of data and different seasonal conditions may impact the relative performance of varieties, caution is advised.