Ecuador’s Hemp Regulations

In October, Ecuador’s agriculture ministry (MAG) released hemp regulations, in the form of Acuerdo Ministerial No. 109 (English). This follows the National Assembly’s 2019 decriminalization of cannabis with a THC content of less than 1.0% THC (which entered into forced on June 21, 2020).

The regulations distinguish between industrial hemp (cáñamo para uso industrial) and hemp (cáñamo), also referred to as non-psychoactive cannabis (cannabis no psicoactivo). Both are legal, but their regulation is slightly different. Frankly, the regulations could be a little clearer when it comes to defining both categories. In essence, however, industrial hemp is that used for activities such as fiber production, while “plain” hemp is used to make consumer products.

Under the regulations MAG is tasked with the licensure of entities that wish to participate in the hemp industry. These entities must be either incorporated or domiciled in Ecuador.

MAG will issue seven types of licenses:

License 1: importation and commercialization of hemp seeds and cuttings (including seeds for industrial use) License 2: sowing and production of hemp seeds and cuttings (including seeds for industrial use) License 3: hemp cultivation License 4: industrial hemp cultivation License 5: hemp processing and production of hemp derivatives License 6: plant

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