Prentiss’ first hemp company is now closed

Published 2:19 pm Thursday, February 24, 2022

Leaf River Extraction is currently closed in Prentiss. At the time of its opening in June 2021, it was the first and only hemp production, processing and CBD extraction company in Mississippi. The business was located in the former blue KLH building on John Street Extension in Prentiss and was owned by Eric and Melanie Sorenson. The couple chose JDC after the company had outgrown its space in Jasper County and needed a place to expand as the industrial hemp industry and markets grew. The couple has since returned to Jasper County.

“We opened the door for other cannabis and hemp related businesses to come to Jefferson Davis County,” said Melanie Sorenson. The Sorensons are also the founders of the Mississippi Industrial Hemp Association, which continues today. Sorenson says the association is starting fiber trials soon. “We are glad to be a part of moving the hemp industry forward in Mississippi. We certainly haven’t left the industry behind. You will see us in the future.”

According to Jefferson Davis County Economic Development Director Gary Bass, economic development projects do not happen overnight. “I have been working on industrial hemp and medical marijuana for over a year now,” said Bass. “What my intention has been, is, and what I pray for, is the best-case scenario for JDC.” Bass says sometimes things that you think are going to have longevity don’t, but those short-lived things can create long term effects in new and different ways. “That is just what Leaf River Extraction and Eric and Melanie have done for JDC. For that, we owe them a debt of gratitude.  The Sorensons being here have paved the way for others to come and carry the flag across the finish line.”

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