Several residents of Trelawny have welcomed the employment opportunities afforded them by Organic Growth Holdings (OGH) Incorporated’s craft medicinal hemp farm at Long Pond Estate in the parish.
At least 30 residents from the communities of Jackson Town, Clarks Town and Duncans have been employed by OGH since the entity was granted a lease for the 635-acre property in June this year.
The company, which trades locally as OGH Grow Jamaica, will utilise the hemp in the manufacture of several organic wellness products.
Craft medicinal hemp is the meticulous process of growing premium hemp. The cannabidiol (CBD)-infused products will be made at OGH’s processing facilities located on the property, which along with the farming operations represent an overall investment totalling US$4 million.
Jackson Town resident, Deron Campbell, told JIS News that he is pleased to be a part of the project, noting that he has always aspired towards a career in agriculture.
He said the project presents, “a [great] opportunity for me and others living in [these areas].”
Another resident of Jackson Town, Martin Bernard, said he will be taking full advantage of the opportunity.
Bernard, who has been with the team for the past six months, pointed out that he has, so far, enjoyed cultivating the hemp crop with his colleagues.
Managing Director of OGH Grow Jamaica, Mitchell Yeckes, commended the residents for the work they are already undertaking to ensure a smooth start to the project.
“It is obvious [to tell by] the hard work of the people from Jackson Town, Clarks Town, and Duncans that they are up to the task. They want to work and invest and build something that will differentiate and something that will be meaningful. OGH will be that company… We are that company,” Yeckes said while addressing the groundbreaking ceremony for the facility Last Wednesday (Dec 11).
He assured that the entity “stands committed and will continue to provide sustainable employment to the local communities”.
For his part, Vice President of OGH Grow Jamaica, Shawn Rogers, noted that the residents have given the company a warm welcome.
“I have truly met with some of the friendliest, most caring and hard-working people on this island. The surrounding communities and Duncans, Clarks Town [and] Jackson Town have embraced us and treated us as their own. Our Jamaican team [members] have been exceptional,” he indicated during the gathering.
Ground was officially broken for the facility by Minister of Industry and Agriculture Audley Shaw.
The company plans to begin exporting its line of CBD wellness products in 2020 and to have products in hotel gift shops, spas and pharmacies island wide by the second quarter next year.