FLEMINGTON—The greenhouse in Flemington is back in use thanks to the hard work and dedication of Almost Heaven Agriculture.
Almost Heaven Agriculture owners Bill Flanigan and Mike Manypenny, along with business partner in the project Aaron Moses had a vision to get the greenhouses back to operation.
Manypenny shared that the greenhouses have set vacant for almost 20 years, and they were in disrepair.
The group had a three-year plan and determination to get the greenhouse back up and running and work began in January, with just under two acres of greenhouse being renovated.
During that time 800 panels of glass were replaced, 17 furnaces and electrical wiring were fixed, along with the removal of more than a ton of weed growth that thrived for many years.
But that was just the beginning. A company owned by former boxer and entrepreneur Mike Tyson has partnered with the group to take advantage of West Virginia’s relatively business-friendly industrial hemp laws to cultivate and extract the oils used in some cannabinoid products.
Industrial hemp is from the plant species Cannabis sativa and has been used worldwide to produce a variety of industrial and consumer products, and can also be used to create CBD oils, which is a medicinal component of the plant.
The partnership will help fund the 350,000-square-foot greenhouse facility and will help with the expansion, which has enough land to expand to one million square feet.
“The plan is to come here and help the economy,” said Rob Hickman, CEO of Tyson Ranch, a 40-acre marijuana cultivating facility in California.
Tyson has also lent his name to a line of over-the-counter treatments and medications utilizing cannabidiol, an oil found in hemp and marijuana.
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of the oils found in marijuana and hemp, but unlike THC, does not produce a “high” in users. CBD oil is thought to have some medicinal uses, including the reduction of pain and inflammation.
Flanigan shared that the CBD oil, will be extracted from the plants and be used to make many different products.
Manypenny believes that commercializing industrial hemp will also help create jobs throughout the state, and allow farmers to see some major profits.
In addition, company executives said that the products marketed under the Tyson banner are approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
“Hemp offers nearly limitless opportunities, and both farmers and residents would see benefits from hemp made products, said Manypenny. “We have the potential for growth for the community and for the state.”
Flanigan shared that with the new partnership they plan to hire 25-50 people this year and continue to bring more jobs and business opportunities the community.
They are currently accepting applications for various positions including general labor, carpenters, electricians, individuals to help with plant propagation and more.
“We have so much potential here in Taylor County. We want to keep it local and help stimulate the economy and bring jobs here,” said Flanigan.
Resumes can be mailed to Almost Heave Agriculture 233, Dogwood Ln, Grafton WV, 26354.