HERMITAGE – A Texas-based CBD processor is looking to open up shop in Reynolds.
Representatives of Coldfall Corp., based in Houston, announced its intention to settle in Mercer County last week during the annual meeting of Penn-Northwest Development Corp.
Andre Bustamante, Coldfall’s director of human services, said the company was sold on the move after a tour of Greenville-Reynolds Development Corp’s industrial park in Pymatuning Township.
“In one day we found a home,’’ he said during the Penn-Northwest event. “We’re coming.’’
Bustamante said the company has spoken to Gov. Tom Wolf’s Governor’s Action Team about getting financing for the project. Immediate plans for Coldfall are to produce cannabidiol, better known as CBD, Bustamante said.
“We hope to be in production in 90 days,’’ he said.
Randy Seitz, Penn-Northwest’s CEO, said Coldfall was seeking the financing for the final costs for its move.
“What they’re talking about is getting a loan for the equipment they want to bring here,’’ Seitz said.
Coldfall also is interested in creating a local farm cooperative to supply the hemp it will process into CBD oil, Bustamante said.
“We don’t own any farms,’’ he said. “And right now we’re shopping to get 2 million pounds (of hemp) to get us through next year.’’
Bustamante said he expects farmers to be willing to grow hemp, which is legal in Pennsylvania.
“Hemp is 10 times more profitable than corn,’’ he said.
Coldfall, which also converts plastics, coal and tires into oil products including fuel, has developed an process to extract CBD from hemp more efficiently, and with a better-quality product, than other processors, Bustamente said.
CBD oil is a booming business, with shops opening throughout the state, including Mercer County. The substance has been linked to pain relief and depression treatment, among other medical benefits.
Legal CBD, derived from hemp, does not contain tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the intoxicant in marijuana.
And the CBD operation could be only the beginning. Coldfall officials are thinking about bringing a tire recycling operation to the Reynolds site, but there is no timetable in place for that project.
“We could be employing hundreds here,’’ Bustamente said.