By Collin Krabbe – Technology reporter , Albuquerque Business First
Sep 23, 2020, 3:34pm EDT
A newly formed New Mexico hemp company has plans for a multi-million dollar expansion in Albuquerque following a deal that closed earlier this month.
Santa Fe Farms acquired Albuquerque-based hemp services company Fathom NM on Sept. 1 after about five months of negotiations, said Santa Fe Farms Founder and CEO Steven Gluckstern. Santa Fe Farms now has more than 40 employees, he said.
Founded in 2019, Santa Fe Farms is creating cannabinoid products for personal, medical and wellness use, its website says.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The combined company has big growth goals, with plans to hire 50 to 83 full time workers, said Gluckstern and former Fathom NM partner Jeff Apodaca.
Apodaca, who is now the Vice-Chairman of Santa Fe Farms, said the company is working to raise $25 million. The money would be used for an expansion at Mesa del Sol, a planned multi-use development in the South Valley, according to the company and Mesa del Sol Managing Partner Steve Chavez.
The expansion could be 100,000 square feet in size, Chavez said, adding that a lease has not been signed but will be “any day now.”
Together, Fathom NM and Santa Fe Farms have jointly raised $6 million, Apodaca said.
Fathom NM moved into a 50,000 square foot facility at Mesa del Sol in August 2019, Business First reported. Chavez previously said another building was going to be built for Fathom NM “on the mesa.”
Fathom NM offered agricultural services to regional hemp farmers — including the harvesting, shucking, drying, milling, prepping and sealing of crops — and access to a network of buyers and sellers, Apodaca previously told Business First.
The acquisition provides Santa Fe Farms with access to a full vertical range of hemp services, from the cultivation process to the sale of product. The sale about doubled the size of each firm’s sales network, and their workforces, Apodaca said.
“We can help the farmer grow the best product, and process and harvest every aspect of that plant,” Apodaca said.
Hemp comes from the same plant species as cannabis, but has smaller amounts of THC — the mind-altering chemical that makes users inebriated — and is frequently used to create products with large amounts of CBD, often used to treat pain.
Fathom NM is listed as one of 26 facilities that has been permitted by the New Mexico Environment Department to extract, manufacture, or warehouse hemp products in the state.
Companies across New Mexico have said they are trying to cash in on hemp production following a revision of the state’s rules regarding the plant’s cultivation in 2018. They include Rich Global Hemp, which was to receive Local Economic Development Act money for the creation of 180 jobs to the Las Cruces area.