Meet the vendor: Soggy Bottom Hemp

Meet the vendor: Soggy Bottom Hemp
Posted on 08/26/2021
Gary holding jar of CBD pain cream

One of our newest and always-smiling vendors is Soggy Bottom Hemp. If you have not had a chance to speak to Gary, Dawn or Bob about their products, stop by, get a sample, and learn more about how hemp is starting to be produced in Kansas and used in thousands of products. They are now using their farm-grown hemp oil to produce pain cream, CBG gummies for humans and even dog treats for anxious canines. 

Gary is a farm kid originally from Toledo, Iowa. Growing up, his family farmed mostly corn and soybeans and raised livestock. After college, Gary chose to leave the farm for the business world. His brothers still manage the family farm in Iowa today. It was a natural fit for Gary to make his way back to farming, and his creativity and passion are contagious when you speak to him at the Market. The Soggy Bottom Hemp team receives lots of questions about the history of hemp, their growing process, their products and the difference between marijuana and hemp.

In 2019, Soggy Bottom Hemp started as part of an experimental hemp-growing program after the federal farm bill separated hemp from marijuana. The program was highly regulated through 2020 to ensure that farmers could grow a product with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) levels less than 0.3%. Soggy Bottom was able to meet the requirements, and their oil tests at under 0.3%. For comparison, THC in marijuana and other THC medical or recreational products contain up to 25% THC. Wild Kansas ditch weed contains 7% THC. 

There are different varieties of hemp, and the amount of THC is determined by genetics and timing of the harvest. Hemp grows well in Midwest conditions, but it is very labor intensive. It is harvested by hand and, during the regulatory research phase, growers across the state had to be cautious to harvest within a small window so the THC levels stayed low enough to be a legal product. The research phase for Kansas hemp was successful, and farmers can now grow and harvest hemp that works best for their farm to keep the THC levels low.

Soggy Bottom Hemp’s first crops were grown in the Spring Hill area, where they grew 50 acres of hemp for oil. They found that the quantity of hemp grown exceeded the amount of oil that they needed for their products. Since then, they have been able to scale back the land necessary for success. Gary’s first farm property sold, and they have relocated the operation to Pleasanton, Kansas, where they are raising hemp hydroponically indoors. 

Once the hemp is hand harvested, it is dried and sent to a licensed Kansas processor to extract the CBD oil from the buds. The oil is then used for all the products they bring to market. Their most popular product is a pain cream created by Gary using the CBD oil and one of his not-so-secret ingredients —  DMSO, or dimethyl sulfoxide — which penetrates the skin faster to get the CBD to the area of pain. Customers say that their relief is quick and have returned over and over again to get more pain cream.

Prior to 1937, hemp was legal to grow in the United States. It was grown largely for its fiber to make clothing before cotton was commonly used. Using hemp for THC is just a small part of the possibilities for hemp products. There are thousands of uses for hemp, and it is expected to be a major crop for Kansas agriculture in the coming years. Hemp-based plastics that do not release toxic chemicals can replace petroleum-based plastics that take a much longer time to biodegrade. Hemp can also be used in food products to create protein-rich flour, beer, milk and cooking oils. It can even be used to make building products like drywall.

Soggy Bottom Hemp has truly enjoyed being a part of the Lenexa Farmers Market and helping people reduce pain and anxiety in their lives.

Published Aug. 26, 2021
hemp being grown hydroponically indoorshemp grown outdoors