The Colorado Department of Agriculture has implemented an Authorized Hemp Sampler program that allows private hemp samplers to become certified through the State of Colorado.
Authorized Hemp Samplers collect hemp samples from hemp fields registered by the CDA and submit them to a certified laboratory where the list of certified labs will be published by CDPHE to verify compliance to allowable total THC levels. Authorized hemp samplers work independently and will be able to charge a hemp grower for their service. A test result of a representative sample with a total THC concentration on a dry weight basis greater than the acceptable Hemp THC level shall be conclusive evidence that the lot represented by the sample is not in compliance with this Rule. At least one non-compliant hemp plant or part of a plant in the Registered Land Area containing a total THC concentration on a dry weight basis of more than 0.3% and that the Registrant of that Registered Land Area will be considered non-compliant with the Act (8 CCR 1203-23 Rule 4.7.4).
Steps to become an Authorized Hemp Sampler
To receive certification as an Authorized Hemp Sampler, an applicant must follow the following steps. All links can also be found below.
- Review all training materials (PowerPoint slides, rules and regulations).
- Take the Authorized Sampler exam. Applicants must score 80% or above on the exam. Applications with an exam score completed more than 60 days will not be processed.
- Application for authorized sampler can be made through Hemp Online Portal (HOP). Applicants need to create a profile, enter an exam score, review and accept the terms and conditions required to be an authorized hemp sampler. These include:
- A hemp registrant may not act as an authorized sampler;
- Applicant is expected to review all required training materials, forms, rules, and protocols in order to qualify as an authorized hemp sampler for the CDA Authorized Sampler Program;
- Agree to adhere to CDA-approved sampling protocols;
- Commit not to disclose/share any specific operational details of hemp operations that constitute confidential commercial data including: ownership, numbers, field locations, and movements of crops, financial information, purchase and sale of crops, account numbers or unique identifiers issued by government or private entities, and operational protocols.
Once all the steps outlined above are completed, the application will be reviewed and, if accepted, applicant will be notified and added to the list of Authorized Samplers.
Authorized Hemp Sampler Rules
All Hemp Registrations are subject to routine inspection and sampling to verify that the total THC concentration of the hemp planted within a Registered Land Area does not exceed the acceptable hemp THC level (8 CCR 1203-23 Rule 4.1). At least 30 days prior to the anticipated harvest, a Hemp Registrant must coordinate sampling of its hemp lots by contacting an Authorized Hemp Sampler. A Registrant shall not harvest the hemp prior to sample collection (8 CCR 1203-23 Rule 4.7.6).
Authorized Samplers will negotiate a price for the collection and delivery of regulatory samples to one of the a certified labs identified by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) directly with the Registrant. The Hemp Registrant is responsible for paying all fees to Authorized Samplers and third party labs (8 CCR 1203-23 Rule 4.9.3).
8 CCR 1203-23 Rule 4.10.2 states “The Commissioner may cancel an authorized sampler’s registration and certification or refuse to register or certify any person who has engaged in any of the following activities: Consistent disregard for established and approved methods of sampling determined by the Department, Failing or refusing to disclose a conflict of interest, Tampering with samples to influence test results, and the Purposeful commingling of sampled lots.”
In addition, Authorized Samplers are not authorized to access any fields, buildings or facilities without the presence of the registered producer or their appointed representative. They cannot confiscate any plant material that exceeds the required quantity for sample purposes.
Authorized Sampler requirements
Anyone interested in becoming an Authorized Sampler will have to meet the following criteria:
- A candidate will be required to participate in an online, self directed training program or virtual conference training program for a larger group (requests can be made to email@example.com). All prospective samplers will need to review all associated documents including any forms, rules and protocols associated with the CDA hemp program.
- They will need to receive a score of 80% or higher on a state administered hemp sampler certification exam.
- They will complete an application and sign a conflict of interest document and disclosure statements.
- A hemp registrant may not act as an authorized hemp sampler.
The certification is valid for one year from the date of its issuance. At the end of that period, the Authorized Sampler will need to be certified again, using the same process.
The Hemp Certification Sampling Coordinator will oversee the recruitment, training, testing and certification of all certified hemp sampling agents. He/She will make any necessary modifications to sample collection guidelines to satisfy state and federal requirements. The Hemp Certification Sampling Coordinator will continuously conduct quality control to ensure sampling is completed in a consistent and uniform manner.
A list of Authorized Samplers will be provided on a platform for the hemp registrants to choose a sampler. Contact info as well as counties an Authorized Sampler is willing to cover will also be provided to the hemp registrants.
Become an Authorized Sampler
Authorized Sampler Contact Information
If you have questions, contact:
Michael J. Roll, Hemp Sampling Certification Coordinator
P 720.955.8840 | F 303.466.2860