Industrial Hemp in Santa Clara County

USDA has approved California’s state regulatory plan for hemp production, effective January 1, 2022. Cultivation is allowed in Santa Clara County under the state regulatory plan and Santa Clara County Industrial Hemp Ordinance.

California Food and Agricultural Code requires all growers, breeders, and established agricultural research institutions of industrial hemp to register with the County Agricultural Commissioner prior to cultivation. Registration procedures are outlined in Sections 4901 in Title 3 of the California Code of Regulations and applications are available on CDFA’s Industrial Hemp Program webpage

Frequently Asked Questions:

Summary of Santa Clara County Industrial Hemp Ordinance
-Maximum of 250 acres allowed for cultivation
-No operations allowed within ¼ mile of a sensitive receptor (ex. child day care facilities, schools, playfields, religious institutions, etc.)
-No operations allowed within 200 ft of a dwelling or right-of-way
-Each operation site must be posted with appropriate signage at specific locations on property
-Permission granted to commissioner/contractors to enter properties 

The Santa Clara County Industrial Hemp Program was made possible through the promulgation of the Santa Clara County Industrial Hemp Ordinance, adopted by the Board of Supervisors on August 25, 2020. 

Please call our office if you have specific questions regarding the ordinance. If you would like to view the complete ordinance  (definitions p. 1, use regulations p. 18, and conditions p. 25).

Anyone wishing to cultivate industrial hemp in Santa Clara County must register with California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) through the Santa Clara County Office of the Agricultural Commissioner  and obtain clearance with the Santa Clara County Planning and Development Department.  Registration must be completed and approved before cultivation.

Hemp cultivation

Those wishing to cultivate industrial hemp shall register as a grower, a seed breeder, or both.  Those wishing to produce and sell industrial hemp nursery stock for planting or cultivating must also possess a nursery license issued by CDFA, and may be required to register as a grower, a seed breeder, or both.  Nursery stock means any plant for planting or for propagation.

In preparation of the Industrial Hemp Program, Santa Clara County will begin accepting registration applications after the Hemp State Plan is approved.  Please call our office if you are interested in planting hemp.  For now, due to the COVID-19 health crisis, applications and payments (payable to CDFA) need to be mailed to our San Martin office, located at:
80 West Highland Ave, Building K
San Martin, CA 95046

Do not plant or cultivate industrial hemp until registration has been approved.  Any planting or cultivation before registration is approved may result in crop destruction and violations for unpermitted cannabis cultivation.

You can sign up to receive e-mail updates from CDFA regarding industrial hemp by visiting CDFA’s subscription webpage, or by sending a blank e-mail to: [email protected]

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