Lasa Extract LLC has proposed an amendment to city zoning regulations that would allow it to open a retail cannabis dispensary and micro-cultivation facility at its existing CBD extraction business at 426 South Grand St. in Suffield.
Lasa Extract currently operates a CBD extraction facility at the location, which is located in a residential area of a building that was originally constructed for tobacco processing.
The business is owned by Rick Sotil, a former Jai Alai player, arborist and carpenter. Its state-of-the-art extraction process, which relies on carbon dioxide instead of the more commonly used ethanol, results in a high-quality and cleaner product, he told the Hartford Business Journal in November of 2020.
Lasa Extract is one of the few manufacturers of hemp oil in Connecticut.
The proposed zoning text change would give existing cannabis processing plants in Suffield the ability to apply for a special permit for the retail sale and micro-cultivation of cannabis.
Recently, the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission adopted limits on retail trade and micro-cultivation in industrial zones.
The commission opened a hearing on the change at its May 16 meeting. The hearing was continued until the June meeting, to give the commission time to consult with its lawyers.
Several residents said they support the proposal because it’s “a good opportunity for farmers” and would generate tax revenue. Concern was raised about odor control.
Connecticut legalized the sale of hemp products in May 2019.
Hemp is cannabis that contains 0.3% or less of THC, the plant’s psychoactive compound; Marijuana is cannabis that contains more than 0.3 percent THC. CBD, another active ingredient in cannabis, is obtained directly from the hemp plant and does not cause a “high” but has been found to provide benefits to some users.
Lasa is represented by attorney Daniel Finnegan of Bulkley, Richardson and Gelinas in Springfield, Massachusetts.