People work on 1.5 acres of hemp plants for the business Thumb Coast CBD, which hopes to open a storefront in St. Clair in the next three months. (Photo: Mara and Kyle McCalmon)
A St. Clair County couple is opening a CBD shop in St. Clair.
Mara and Kyle McCalmon have been growing 15,000 hemp plants. They are in the process of harvesting them, Kyle McCalmon said, and are hoping to open a cannabidiol, or CBD, store in the next three months. They plan to sell only what they grow and process themselves.
“We will have complete control over everything in our product,” he said.
They are like “pioneers” for the hemp industry in St. Clair County and “are setting the bar,” Mara McCalmon said.
CBD is one of the naturally occurring chemical compounds known as cannabinoids found in cannabis plants.
Unlike the molecule THC, the major psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, CBD doesn’t get users high.
In humans, CBD shows no effects indicative of abuse or dependence potential, a 2017 World Health Organization report said, and there was no evidence of recreational use of CBD or any public health problems associated with the use of pure CBD.
The McCalmons’ CBD business is called Thumb Coast CBD and it will be located in the St. Clair plaza at 201 N. Riverside Ave.
Kyle McCalmon said they have the license to grow and process through the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
A hemp grower registration is required for those who want to plant, grow or harvest live hemp plants or viable hemp seeds. A hemp processor-handler license is required for those who want to process, handle, or market industrial hemp, according to the state of Michigan website.
MDARD’s communications director Jennifer Holton declined to confirm whether the McCalmons were licensed.
Instead, she sent a statement from its legal counsel, saying in part that “The law precludes us from releasing information submitted to us as part of licensing. We have a process in place with law enforcement if they need to verify, but we are not allowed to release information to the public/media.”
Both Kyle and Mara McCalmon say they use CBD products. He struggled with insomnia and using CBD helps him relax and go to sleep. She used CBD to switch from pharmaceuticals to something “more natural.”
They hope to educate people about the products and their potential benefits when the store is open, Kyle McCalmon said.
Right now, they plan to offer the following four types of products in the store:
- A smokable flower.
- A type of CBD oil taken orally.
- A topical cream.
- Consumable gummy bears.
Both Mara and Kyle McCalmon’s brothers will be involved in the business.
“It’s about people and doing things with the ones you love,” Mara McCalmon said.
They’re not looking to expand their workforce anytime soon but would be willing to help other people get started in the business, Kyle McCalmon said.
“I think there’s room for a lot of people to be involved in the industry as a whole,” he said.
Contact Bryce Airgood at (810) 434-9895 or email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @bairgood123.
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