Hemp dispensary raising eyebrows in south Alabama

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ELBERTA, Ala. (WKRG) —  A new hemp dispensary is generating a lot of buzz in the tiny Baldwin County town of Elberta–not all of it good.  Seedless Green just opened along Highway 98.  The owner hopes a little bit of education and patience can smooth over some pushback from some in the town.  

Just because this bag of industrial hemp may look like a giant sack of weed, or there’s a marijuana leaf on their logo, owner Christian Butts says everything they sell here is legal.  While he says he is in favor of marijuana legalization, Butts says you won’t find anything illegal in his shop.  He says his business is above board.  

“Absolutely, absolutely, to benefit many people in this community,” said Butts.  The first clash with the town came last weekend.  Seedless Green had a soft opening during the Elberta Sausage Festival, and put up their sign.  The owner says, just a day later, they got a call from their realtor saying the sign was causing controversy so they opted to take it down for now.  It’s hoped everyone’s questions and concerns can be addressed at this week’s town council meeting.  

“Giving them the assurance, I have a lot riding on this, I want to work within the law and will work within the law,” said Butts.  I spoke with town Councilwoman Vicky Norris over the phone Sunday morning who said she’s not outright opposed to Seedless Green, they just need to know more.  

“In abidance to the First Amendment they have the right to say and do but we have a small town image and we want to protect that if that’s necessary,” said Norris.  She said people in town were also concerned by the fact the business is just a short distance from a children’s park on Highway 98.  Butts says he picked Elberta rather than Mobile or a more populated part of Baldwin County because he’s been farming in Lilian for years.  The town council’s regularly scheduled work session is this Tuesday evening at 6 pm.  

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