North Carolina is not known for its progressive cannabis laws. In fact, it is one of the most restrictive states in the country when it comes to marijuana, with only a very limited medical program and harsh penalties for possession and cultivation. However, there is one county in the Tar Heel State that stands out as a haven for cannabis enthusiasts and growers: Jackson County.
Jackson County: A History of Hemp and Marijuana
Jackson County is located in the western part of North Carolina, bordering Tennessee and Georgia. It is home to about 43,000 people, many of whom are members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, a federally recognized tribe that has its own laws and regulations regarding cannabis. The county is also known for its natural beauty, with mountains, rivers, waterfalls, and forests that attract tourists and outdoor lovers.
Jackson County has a long history of hemp and marijuana cultivation, dating back to the colonial era. Hemp was grown as a cash crop for rope, paper, and textiles, and marijuana was used for medicinal and recreational purposes by the settlers and the Native Americans.
According to local legend, the county was nicknamed “Little California” in the 1970s, when hippies and Vietnam veterans moved to the area and started growing marijuana in the hills and hollows. The county became a hotspot for cannabis production and distribution, supplying the East Coast and beyond with high-quality weed.
Jackson County: A Current Status of Cannabis
Despite the state’s prohibition, Jackson County has maintained its reputation as a cannabis-friendly place, with a thriving underground market and a tolerant attitude from the locals and the law enforcement.
According to a 2019 report by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, Jackson County was one of the top five counties in North Carolina for marijuana eradication, with 2,718 plants seized by the authorities. However, this number is likely a fraction of the actual amount of cannabis grown in the county, as many growers use sophisticated techniques to hide and protect their crops from detection and raids.
Jackson County is also home to several hemp farms, which are legal under the 2018 Farm Bill and the state’s pilot program. Hemp is a variety of cannabis that contains less than 0.3% of THC, the psychoactive compound that causes the high.
Hemp is used for CBD products, which are popular for their health and wellness benefits, as well as for industrial purposes, such as fiber, fuel, and bioplastics. Hemp farmers in Jackson County have to comply with strict regulations and testing requirements, but they also enjoy the support and cooperation of the county officials and the community.
One of the most notable hemp farms in Jackson County is Franny’s Farmacy, owned by Franny and Jeff Tacy. Franny’s Farmacy is a vertically integrated business, meaning that they grow, process, manufacture, and sell their own hemp and CBD products, such as oils, edibles, topicals, and pet products.
Franny’s Farmacy also operates several dispensaries across the state, where customers can buy their products and learn more about hemp and CBD. Franny and Jeff are advocates for the hemp industry and the cannabis movement, and they host events and workshops to educate and empower people about the benefits and potential of the plant.
Jackson County: A Future of Cannabis
Jackson County is a shining example of how cannabis can be a positive force for the economy, the environment, and the society. The county has a rich and diverse cannabis culture, with a mix of old-school growers, modern hemp farmers, and passionate consumers. The county also has a progressive and pragmatic approach to cannabis, with a respect for the plant’s history and a vision for its future.
However, Jackson County is not immune to the challenges and uncertainties that face the cannabis industry and the cannabis community. The state’s laws and regulations are still restrictive and inconsistent, and the federal government’s stance is still unclear and unpredictable. The county also faces competition and pressure from other states and markets, as well as from the black market and the synthetic market. The county also has to deal with the stigma and the stereotypes that surround cannabis, and the social and health issues that affect some of its users.
Jackson County is not perfect, but it is a pioneer and a leader in the cannabis space. The county has a lot to offer and a lot to teach to the rest of North Carolina and the nation. The county has a lot to gain and a lot to lose from the legalization and regulation of cannabis. The county has a lot to celebrate and a lot to fight for in the cannabis movement.
Jackson County is North Carolina’s weed capital, and it will blow your mind with its history, its status, and its future of cannabis. The county is a place where cannabis is grown, sold, and consumed with pride, passion, and purpose. The county is a place where cannabis is a source of income, innovation, and inspiration. The county is a place where cannabis is a part of the culture, the community, and the identity. Jackson County is a place where cannabis is more than a plant, it is a way of life.