The Hemp Farmacy is moving from Grace Street to bigger space on Front Street in downtown Wilmington.
The Hemp Farmacy is the retail component of Wilmington-headquartered Hempleton Investment Group led by CEO Justin Hamilton. The company has seven Hemp Farmacy locations in the state, including another in Wilmington at 1402 S. College Road.
Hamilton has leased the former Trolly Stop and Sam's Hot Dog space as well as the storefront previously occupied by The Cobbler's Bench shoe repair business at 123 N. Front St., with plans to move The Hemp Farmacy from 117 Grace St. once the North Front Street location has been repaired and renovated.
"The store sustained substantial damage during Hurricane Florence on Grace Street and so that triggered us to look for another property," Hamilton said Thursday. "We're very excited about the space on Front. It has a lot of room for expansion. It will be a much bigger store than the store we're leaving on Grace."
The new space contains about 3,000 square feet, almost triple what The Hemp Farmacy had before in downtown Wilmington.
"We will be doing renovations there and combining the two locations. We will also have some executive office space in the back that's for the parent company, Hempleton Investment Group," Hamilton said.
Among its many products, one of the The Hemp Farmacy's bestsellers is Carolina's Hope tinctures, Hamilton said, sublingual supplements derived from hemp that can help people with a variety of ailments.
"It's a very good starter product for people, and usually a good pairing for that product is edibles," he said. "We have soft gels for people more comfortable taking pills than the tincture."
The new store will allow The Hemp Farmacy to expand product lines but also to expand the amount of counters that will be open inside the store "for the heavier tourism parts of the year," Hamilton said.
Hemp produces high levels of the cannabinoid CBD, a chemical compound linked to potential health benefits, including pain relief. Although related to marijuana plants, hemp plants produce much lower amounts of THC, the chemical compound that result in euphoric highs when people smoke pot, and much higher levels of CBD.
"The industry itself is very healthy and growing rapidly. But we did all of us sustain quite a bit of damage in the eastern part of the state because of Hurricane Florence," Hamilton said. "That's both in infrastructure like our buildings and warehouses as well as the actual agricultural crops, the hemp plants themselves."
But despite the storm damage, the industry is still growing, including The Hemp Farmacy.
"We are franchising The Hemp Farmacy model. We have about 25 additional people that are in line for The Hemp Farmacy franchise locations throughout the country," Hamilton said. "We'll be expanding to multiple states over the winter."
For the North Front Street move, The Hemp Farmacy was represented by broker Joan Loch of MoMentum Companies, and Carlton Fisher of Coastal Realty represented Fisher Holdings LLC, the owner.