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A hemp field in the San Luis Valley. Photo courtesy of Colorado Department of Agriculture.

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Thar Extracts Colorado plans to open a hemp processing facility in the Pueblo Airport Industrial Park that will create 27 full-time jobs, the Pueblo Economic Development Corporation announced Monday.

Thar Extracts Colorado is a wholly owned subsidiary of Pittsburgh-based Thar Process, “the global leader in CO2 technology and equipment for the hemp and cannabis industries,” which employs more than 110 people in three states, a news release says.

The new facility’s full-time employees will make an average of $42,037, the release says. Pending approval from Pueblo City Council, the project will receive $405,000 from the city’s half-cent sales tax fund for economic development. The company has committed an additional $12 million in capital investment.

The new facility is expected to be operational in November, said Andrew Trainor, chairman of PEDCO’s board. The company is in the process of buying a property at 305 Keeler Parkway, he said.

“We are thrilled to welcome the Thar Group to the Pueblo community,” Trainor said in the release. “They are a major player in the emerging hemp industry and will be one of the first hemp companies to locate in the Pueblo Airport Industrial Park.

“PEDCO has been concentrating on growing the hemp cluster of businesses for quite some time and Thar will become an anchor to that group. They will bring in several millions of dollars of capital investment to their industrial park location and it is great example of a public-private partnership economic development project.”

Hemp is a variety of the cannabis plant that contains virtually no THC — the psychoactive chemical in marijuana — and doesn’t produce a high. It can be used to make a wide variety of products, including paper, textiles and food.

Ellie is a general assignment reporter. She's a proud Midwesterner, stationery hoarder and Earl Grey tea enthusiast. After interning at The Gazette in 2015, she joined the newspaper's staff in 2016.

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