Hemp and CBD had a tough year in 2020 but hope springs eternal

Oversupply, regulations, nature and COVID conspire against cannabis.

Todd Runestad, Content Director, NaturalProductsInsider.com

December 1, 2020

2 Min Read
Hemp and CBD had a tough year in 2020 but hope springs eternal

A dramatic 2020 in the hemp CBD industry will be the focus of the Hemp Collective Virtual Summit II, being held Wednesday, Dec. 9 from 11:00am to 3:30pm EST.

All things hemp will be covered, from production issues to regulatory bottlenecks, nature to the global pandemic that affected retail sales.

Just before the 2019 hemp harvest in cannabis kingpin Colorado, an early-season snowstorm hit the eastern plains with three inches of heavy snow and freezing temperatures. Vertically integrated market leader Functional Remedies experienced a 40% loss—from 5,500 pounds per acre to 3,300.

Fortunately, the savvy company had other grow locations, minimizing its loss as best it could.

Meanwhile, West Coast wildfires exacted a toll on hemp harvests there.

Nature is always a threat to farmers growing anything anywhere. It’s part of the deal.

But hemp farmers in 2020 were already facing a significant price drop following an overzealous overproduction year of 2019 following the ballyhooed signing of the farm bill in December 2018. Acreage planted in 2020 was about half that of 2019, to 291,000 acres, according to Vote Hemp.

Adding to producer trepidation was the USDA’s Interim Final Rule that deigned to make felons out of farmers.

Thanks to the coronavirus, supplements as a whole have done well at bricks-and-mortar retail, but consumer focus has shifted from CBD to immunity-enhancing supplements.

Related:How to find the right partner for your CBD brand – podcast

What’s a motivated, creative, innovative, passionate industry to do after all this whiplash?

The answers to these questions swirling around everyone’s minds will be revealed on Wednesday, Dec. 9 from 11:00am to 3:30pm EST at the Hemp Collective Virtual Summit II. Attendees can register for this free event here.

If you are already registered on Spark Change for previous events, go here.

In this half-day Zoom-style meetup, you can learn the top things to know about today’s CBD Market. Sessions include:

  • 5 Things to Know Now About the Hemp CBD Market.

  • CBD Sourcing Challenges—Finding the Right Partner for Your Brand

  • Quality Control to Major Tom

  • Community Connections: Networking Break

  • Mission Is the Best Differentiator

  • How Cannabis Is Revolutionizing the Food and Beverage Industry

  • Regulatory Bottlenecks: What Happens After the Empire Strikes Back—FDA, USDA, DEA

  • Practical Science—Designing Studies to Support Claims

The Summit is sponsored by market leaders Ananda Hemp, Balanced Health Botanicals, Beneficial Blends, Bluebird Botanicals, Charlotte’s Web, CV Sciences, EcoGen Laboratories, Green Roads, Korent Hemp CBD, MedTerra, Nutiva, Sorse Technology and Sunsoil CBD Oil.

About the Author(s)

Todd Runestad

Content Director, NaturalProductsInsider.com, Natural Products Insider

Todd Runestad has been writing on nutrition science news since 1997. He is content director for NaturalProductsInsider.com and Natural Products Insider digital magazines. Other incarnations: supplements editor for NewHope.com, Delicious Living!, and Natural Foods Merchandiser. Former editor-in-chief of Functional Ingredients magazine and still covers raw material innovations and ingredient science.

Connect with me here on LinkedIn.


Todd writes about nutrition science news such as this story on mitochondrial nutrients, innovative ingredients such as this story about 12 trendy new ingredient launches from SupplySide West 2023, and is a judge for the NEXTY awards honoring innovation, integrity and inspiration in natural products including his specialty — dietary supplements. He extensively covered the rise and rise and rise and fall of cannabis hemp CBD. He helps produce in-person events at SupplySide West and SupplySide East trade shows and conferences, including the wildly popular Ingredient Idol game show, as well as Natural Products Expo West and Natural Products Expo East and the NBJ Summit. He was a board member for the Hemp Industries Association.

Education / Past Lives

In previous lives Todd was on the other side of nature from natural products — natural history — as managing editor at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. He's sojourned to Burning Man and Mount Everest. He graduated many moons ago from the State University of New York College at Oneonta.


"There is not a colds-and-flu season. There is a vitamin D-deficiency season."

"There is no such thing as inclement weather. Only improper attire."

Link answers question, "When taking magnesium, should you also take vitamin D3 2,000 IU?"

"Cannabis is nature's most nearly perfect plant."

Subscribe and receive the latest insights on the health and nutrition industry.
Join 37,000+ members. Yes, it's completely free.

You May Also Like