WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. — The City of West Columbia could see a new artisan manufacturing CBD business in the near future. The development depends on a West Columbia Zoning Board of Appeals meeting Tuesday evening.
According to the Special Exception Appeal application, the company, Veterans Botanical Group, is requesting permission to produce and sell CBD products.
"There’s a need for pharmaceuticals," said Johnny Thorne, Managing Member of Veteran Botanical Group. "There’s some things that pharmaceuticals target well and do a good job at, we just don’t think it’s the only way to live life. I don’t want to wake up everyday and take 19 medications"
Thorne said West Columbia is a growing in population and businesses. He said he believes it would be a great location for the Veterans Botanical Group.
"It just seems like a good upcoming area," Thorne said. "West Columbia is doing a lot of work through the corridor to make it a nicer place, and we’re a veteran based business, full of people who want to do good for the community, and it seems like a good area to be in."
If approved, the business will move into the former Comedy Closet building on Meeting Street.
"A lot of us have used CBD to help us with things like inflammation," Thorne said. "I would rather take a natural plant based product than I would that’s chemically manufactured. So to us, it’s a matter of doing something safer physically, for long term use."
He said they plan to produce and sell CBD edibles, cosmetics, topicals, and other hemp products for adult consumers, only.
"I take any packaging that we’re looking at and show it to my own children and if they think it looks good, we change the packaging," Thorne said. "So we definitely want to market this to adult users that are trying to do something better for them medically."
He said following federal and state laws, the products will be made with Delta-8. The law prohibits the use of any concentration of THC-the active ingredient in marijuana--that exceeds .3%.
Some residents in the West Columbia community support this proposal.
"I think it’s cool," said Hawa Lukulay, West Columbia Resident. "I just see a wide variety of businesses opening in West Columbia from boutiques to breweries, so I’m excited about all the new people who’s going to come and discovery what’s over the bridge."
Lukulay said there's more harm opening up another bar than opening up a CBD store.
Another community resident said this new business would be good for the area.
"I think it’ll be fine," said Stacey Senn, West Columbia Resident. "The way businesses are growing around here, we’re getting all kinds of new stuff in, so everybody's gotta take their shot."
Senn said the incoming income will also help the city develop and continue to grow.
"Any business that comes to the Meeting Corridor over here, I think it’s a good thing because everything is growing so fast over around here and it’s upping property value here, and hopefully it’ll help our roads," Senn said. "Roads here in West Columbia are terrible, any type of tax coming in, I think it’s a good thing."
News 19 also reached out to the Mayor of West Columbia, Tem Miles. He said as long as it's legal in the state, he will welcome new businesses to the West Columbia area.