CBD production gets tax break

A local development company recently gained support in its venture into becoming one of the state’s first processors of cannabidiol or CBD.

The Seymour City Council unanimously approved a request Monday from Thrive Well LLC for tax abatement on a $1,504,000 investment in manufacturing equipment and information technology.

The abatement on the manufacturing equipment, which includes extractors, purifiers, distillers, lab equipment and safety and compliance equipment, is good for 10 years, while the IT equipment abatement on computers and printers is good for just five years.

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Abatement lets the company phase in paying property taxes on both real and personal property.

Thrive Well, which is a division of Kocolene Development Corp. in Seymour, plans to hire six employees to get the business running, said Jim Plump, executive director of Jackson County Industrial Development Corp.

Those six employees will generate total salaries of $413,000, Plump said. More jobs will be created as the operation grows.

Thrive Well’s position in the market will be as a CBD processor, extracting the cannabidiol from locally grown hemp and selling it to other businesses to produce CBD products, said Doug Prather, president of Kocolene.

Council President Jim Rebber said he knows little about CBD and asked if it was legal to produce and sell it.

Prather said CBD is legal nationally as a result of the 2018 Farm Bill. Indiana made it legal for sale in March 2018, he said.

Thrive Well received a research license through Purdue University at the beginning of the year allowing the company to grow hemp and process CBD. Beginning July 1, it will legally be able to sell its CBD in Indiana commercially, Prather said.

Kocolene began selling CBD products made with outsourced cannabidiol at its discount tobacco stores in March 2018. Its first line of hemp extract product is called 1938 in honor of Kocolene’s first year in business.

Although hemp and marijuana both come from the cannabis plant, hemp contains little to no THC and does not cause the “high” associated with marijuana.

CBD, which contains hemp, has been said to alleviate inflammation, pain, anxiety, insomnia, seizures and a host of other conditions without the dangers of addiction.

It is available in a variety of products on the market today, including consumable oils, pills and gummies, bath bombs, topical ointments, bottled water and even pet products.

The project is set to begin July 1 and be completed by the end of the year, Plump said.

Kocolene is using its existing real estate in Freeman Field for Thrive Well operations and is partnering with B and A Thompson Grain Farm and Myers Sod Farm, both in Jackson County, to grow the hemp.