He wants to add jobs to Boise but couldn’t get a loan. Idaho’s hemp ban stopped it | New

JOHN SOWELL Statesman of Idaho

BOISE – Ten years ago, Paul Frantellizzi contacted Region IV Development, a private, non-profit organization in Twin Falls that funds small business development and public infrastructure projects.

The former mayor of Stanley got $ 250,000 to fund the expansion of Good Superfoods, a Garden City company that focused on creating chocolate bars with healthy additives. By the time he sold the business two years ago, Good Superfoods had grown from a handful of employees to 67 full-time employees.

Earlier this year, Frantellizzi visited Region IV Development again, seeking a similar loan for his latest venture: the production of wellness and body care products primarily from hemp containing cannabidiol. , commonly known as CBD.

Although CBD products are sold widely throughout Idaho, Frantellizzi was turned down for the loan because hemp remains illegal under Idaho law.

Hemp is related to marijuana but only contains a fraction of the amount of THC, the compound that gets cannabis smokers high. Under Idaho law, there is no distinction between hemp and marijuana.

“Because Idaho still considers hemp with any level of THC illegal, I couldn’t get a loan to expand my business,” Frantellizzi said over the phone.

Frantellizzi is CEO of The Blissful Plant Co. of Boise. He and his wife and business partner, Pamela Peters, wanted to use the money to hire employees for the company’s 2,500 square foot office in Northwest Boise.

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