February 26, 2020

4 Min Read
Seneca Foods Partners with Hemp Processor in New JV
Seneca Foods formed a new hemp-focused joint venture with CraftAg Enterprises. Image courtesy of Pixabay

North American packaged fruits and vegetables firm Seneca Foods is entering the hemp business with the formation of Craft Ag LLC, a vertically integrated seed-to-sale hemp company operated as a joint venture with hemp processing firm CraftAg Enterprises Inc., the company announced this month. 

Seneca is investing $10 million in the joint venture and providing a former company-owned cannery in Sunnyside, WA for a new automated hemp processing facility. The new joint venture plans to build out the new plant in Sunnyside and upgrade its current seed and clone propagation facilities located near Royal City, WA.

“Seneca is enthused to be partnering with CraftAg in this rapidly growing hemp agribusiness,” said Kraig Kayser, the company’s president and chief executive officer, in a statement. “The opportunity to repurpose a closed cannery to create a new and exciting business in Sunnyside is very compelling.”

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Washington State-based CraftAg grows, processes, and sells Aromahemp brand smokeable hemp products and herbal vapor blends. The company uses proprietary processes to manufacture dried and cured whole hemp flower. 

“CraftAg is excited to announce this joint venture with Seneca Foods to accelerate the growth of our vertically integrated supply chain for premium Aromahemp flower and related products,” CraftAg Chief Executive Officer Rory Rawlings said in a press release. “The new partnership combines CraftAg’s hemp expertise with Seneca’s multi-generational legacy in food production and distribution at scale. The result in an unbeatable platform for development and production of new hemp-based consumer products.”

The food company will receive a 49% stake in CraftAg LLC.

Earlier this month, Powder & Bulk Solids reported that CBD products manufacturer Vantage Hemp Co. is planning to start production its new large-scale, high volume hemp extraction facility in Greeley, CO this March. The 35,000-sq-ft extraction facility will initially process over 1 million lb. of hemp harvested last season. Vantage Hemp manufactures CGP compliant distillates, isolates, and full-spectrum oils for brands. 

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