Hemp industry could see economic impact from COVID-19 – WHSV

Senator Kaine visits Port Republic hemp farm - WHSV

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — Despite concerns of the economy during the pandemic, the hemp industry aims to keep trending up.

Riverhill Farms hemp plant in Port Republic

Glenn Rodes of Riverhill Farms in Port Republic was one of the first people to get permission to grow hemp and partnered with JMU research. He’s optimistic about the industry’s future during a tough time.

“There’s still a great potential,” Rodes said. “The industry is so small right now that there’s really nowhere to go but up. It’s just a matter of the timing here, it’s really disappointing that the economy is in a difficult position right now.”

Rodes expects that going forward there may be loans for small businesses that could help boost the hemp industry.

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