“Instead of growing 50 acres right off the bat, we’re trying to grow the best quality organic we can.”
-Willamette Hemp Co. Team
Willamette Hemp Company outside of Albany, Oregon is smack dab in the center of an industrial hemp revolution. It used to be a fair assumption that industrial hemp commonly elicited images of vast fields of straggly, haggard cannabis plants, getting harvested by a combine similar to a hay bailer used to feed livestock. Harvesting a plant that was only good for industrial uses, never would one even consider trying to smoke any of that stuff. Weak strains coupled by a multitude of artificial chemicals; no, industrial hemp was not very a nice product to ingest.
People are keenly interested in the non-psychoactive CBD compounds found in the cannabis plant. I was informed at the farm that currently, researchers all over the world are looking into over 50 thousand different uses for cannabis.
From 1905 to 1915, Oregon held the honor of being the nation’s largest hop producer and by 1943, Polk County was known as the “Hop Center of the World.” Travis Wilson, one of the partners of Willamette Hemp, told me that the entire 350 acres they have access to was once a hop farm. One of the hallmarks of the hop harvest was the pooling of the community to help get the hops to market. While visiting, I met friends, family and two very eager young men from Sandpoint, Idaho experiencing their second day in the cannabis industry. It was really nice to feel the sun shining, hear the music playing and participate in lighthearted conversations about the beauty of the harvest. It was easy to step back in time and imagine this place in its former glory.
THE PEOPLE AND PLANTS
Willamette Hemp Company is very busy seeking their USDA Organic label. “Instead of growing 50 acres right off the bat, we’re trying to grow the best quality organic we can. The land has been sitting fallow for over four years now. So it had no inputs into it at all, we have only put 100 percent organic chicken compound, organic mushroom compost and worm castings all locally sourced within the county,” the team shared.
Willamette Hemp Company and their partner, High Mountain Organics, will soon be offering artisan CBD cannabis products directly to the general public. I’ve had the pleasure of trying a few of these products out and my favorite has to be the Comfort Mint Tea. I found it very relaxing, with zero psychoactive effects to distract me. I am really looking forward to seeing the awesome products they have coming in the near future.