“We didn’t know how a small town like this would take the hemp,” says Jason Marshall, a hemp farmer and owner of the only CBD store in Cynthiana, Rocky Ridge Hemp Company.
Jason and his wife, Ginni, run Rocky Ridge with the help on their three sons, Kaleb, Conner and Carsen. “We want to see the same work ethic in our children,” Jason says.
Jason spends long days out on the farm growing, processing and stripping the hemp, sometimes working from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.. “Farming taught me work ethic," Jason says. "To be successful, you have to put in work.”
The family is constantly on the go, but finds a way to use their business to keep them closer together. Kaleb works part time at the store, and his brothers often hang out there. “The boys are a part of it. They are in it just as deep as we are,” Ginni says.
Jason started growing hemp when it became legal in Kentucky in 2013, making him one of the first farmers in Harrison County to do so. He and Ginni are pioneering local advocates for CBD. They personally use it and recommend it for help with anxiety, body pain and falling asleep.
Jason is aware that many people are suspicious of hemp and CBD because they often associate those products with marijuana, which is different. CBD is derived from hemp, not marijuana.
“It’s just a plant," Jason says of hemp. "You put the seed in the ground and it grows.”
But he's encouraged by the fact that his business is growing. “This is the future," he says. “It’s been a struggle, but it’s finally starting to pay off.”