The seeds, stems, roots and leaves grown on the farm need to be processed locally, as transporting bulk raw materials around is expensive.
The seed and material threshed off the stems during harvest, needs to be dried out to a moisture content of around 12 %, they can then be transported to a licenced seed cleaner to be dressed and stored until called for by a producer.
We have the infrastructure in New Zealand to do these steps, so the capacity is there and the industry can scale once demand is proven.
Stems require more processing as they are bulky to move, the closer the processing can be to the field the better. The stems go through a process of decortication, which is where they are split between, primary and secondary bast fibres and the inner woody pith called hurd or shiv.
This decortication step can be achieved by hand, via a small two man machine or a production line can be used, the difference is the cost to set up. The costs of these alternatives range from a few thousand to $2-$20 million.
Please note in New Zealand seed and seed processing require a licence for the location being used. Stems with out leaves do not require a licence.