Seed Stock and Genetics

Recently we spoke with Seth Crawford, a leader in CBD seed stock about the importance of choosing good seed stock and learned some valuable information I’d like to share with our CBD hemp farmers.

With the hemp industry rapidly scaling, this leaves room for improvement for the certification and guarantee of feminized seed.  When choosing a seed vendor, make sure to buy your hemp seeds from a company who has conducted thorough field trials. This will ensure your entire crop won’t go to seed, rendering it worthless.

To ensure your crops are consistent with previous genetics, using the same parent plants from teh same vendor is the only way to guarantee seed stock. Reputable seed producers are able to achieve a ratio of 1 male out of every 4,000-8,000 plants. If your seed stock isn’t hitting those numbers, find a new seed or clone supplier who has conducted extensive tests on their genetics.  We recommend vendors who can provide 3rd party germination tests and a week by week potency results for the hemp genetics you are buying so you know when the CBD and THC spikes.

Ensuring that you have a feminized seed stock will pay dividends in your yield, and crop value. A pollinated crop can reduce your CBD output by 50%, eliminating a majority of profitability.  In 2019, the market will be more competitive, and we anticipate a major surplus of hemp material in the USA. Seeded crops will become less desirable due to the additional processing to prepare the material for extraction, and the lower extraction yields.  

If your goal is to maximize your value, avoid collecting seeds from a crop that has seeded due to the instability of the genetics, which can result in an unknown germination rate of male plants! The male seed genetics (the one that pollinated the females) could result in as much as 40-50% of your crop producing male flowers, while also releasing pollen to every farm within 15-20 miles. There are currently lawsuits going to trial in Oregon over farmers releasing pollen into neighboring farms, leading to the neighbor’s crop going to seed. Be a good neighbor- buy seed stock from a reputable seed company.

In summary:

  • Seed stock has to be verified through field trials
  • Feminized seed stock will result in substantially higher CBD ratios (still check for males!)
  • Unstable genetics can cause disastrous economic issues like crop loss,and loss of livelihood for your neighbors (and resulting lawsuits!)

To ensure your crop’s success, buy seed stock and clones from reputable and proven vendors who have conducted successful field trials. Stable genetics is crucial for a successful harvest. Good luck with your 2019 planting and we hope to see you this year at the Oregon Hemp Convention!

Michel Navedo

CBD Hemp Specialist

Tel. 425-606-7236


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