Source: Courier Journal
Kentucky’s legalization of industrial hemp has spawned several new startups, but a handful have focused on lucrative CBD, the non-psychoactive oil derived from the plant. Louisville-based Commonwealth Extract is going in big, contracting growers to raise nearly 187 acres this summer with plans to create a $9 million manufacturing facility later this year.
At the end of his rope
For Taylor, a 44-year-old Army veteran, CBD became a lifeline after he was struck by seizures nine years ago. Doctors prescribed a powerful combination of anti-psychotic and anti-convulsant drugs that left him dazed and lethargic, and searching for a way to reclaim his life. “I was at the end of my rope,” he said.
He’d piled up nearly $80,000 in medical debt before discovering CBD, which he bought through a care network in Oregon. It stopped the seizures and convinced him the oil was invaluable as a treatment. Smoking marijuana had helped a bit, but CBD, which is highly concentrated and placed with a droplet under the tongue, was far more effective.
As Kentucky lawmakers began to discuss legalizing hemp three years ago, the Kentucky Epilepsy Foundation lent its voice, arguing that easier access to CBD oil may help some of the estimated 53,000 Kentucky children with epilepsy and pave the way for research and clinical trials to validate CBD for some medical uses. One study of synthetic CBD is now underway at the University of Kentucky.