As our hemp producer/farmer customers and we have been getting ready for the 2020 season, we find ourselves coming back to the mantra of “Start with the end in mind.” To start like that, of course, you need to know your end, so what should our farmers have as a goal for the 2020 hemp season?
Our working hypothesis is that our producers should strive to maximize the CBD units (measured as weight) they have put up in shelf-stable, marketable, process-able form and the cost they must incur to get to that number. Everything they do should be focused on maximizing that number, and anything that doesn’t increase that number is suspect. Hemp’s characteristics in the field count for little: plant size, weight, spacing, tested CBD%, etc. If the CBD is not in a marketable form following harvest, it doesn’t count.
Working backward from that end of a shelf-stable, marketable, process-able product, what are the major components of creating value? Which of those does the hemp producer control and which must they source, what are the key gaps that need to be filled? For instance:
- Dryer. What drying system will be used and where is it located?
- Harvesting. What harvesting method will be used, and how will harvested biomass be moved to the dryer?
- Cultivation. What cultivation methods will be used?
- Planting (direct seed vs. transplant). What planting methods will be used, and what does that mean for plant spacing, cultivation, equipment and labor needs, and logistical support?
- Seeds and genetics. What seed types are appropriate foundations for the program?
Because this chain of activity is only as strong as its weakest link, we at HNP have founded our business on supporting and communicating across that entire producer chain.