HELENA – On Sept. 9, Sen. Jon Tester announced that federally insured credits unions may begin to provide banking services to legally operating hemp producers. This decision comes under the guidance of the National Credit Union Administration and is the first time a federal regulator has clarified that hemp farmers can access financial services.
Up until December of 2018, hemp was considered a controlled substance in the U.S. and Montana farmers were limited to growing the crop through a select pilot program launched in 2014. However, following passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp was removed from the Drug Enforcement Agency’s list of controlled substances, making it legal to grow industrial hemp in the U.S.
“This is a strong step toward cutting through the red tape that’s slowing down Montana hemp farmers,” said Tester in a statement. “I’m going to keep fighting to make sure our state’s hemp producers can access the resources that will help them create jobs and grow their businesses.”