NAVIGATION

February 15, 2019
Squeeze Play: Tampa Company Uses Its Presses to Squeeze Marijuana

Photo: Mark Wemple

Bob Johnston is Vincent Corp's president and senior engineer.

Southwest Florida Roundup

Squeeze Play: Tampa Company Uses Its Presses to Squeeze Marijuana

Legal marijuana creates another business line for Vincent Corp.

Art Levy | 2/27/2018

In the 1930s, the first of Vincent Corp.’s screw presses helped make cattle feed by squeezing liquid from peels left over after making orange juice. The presses today do much the same job — squeezing just about anything nearly dry — but the materials they press have evolved well beyond citrus waste.

During the last few years, for example, Tampa-based Vincent has supplied nearly 200 presses to companies processing eggshells. After the shells go through the press, workers collect liquid albumen, a pure protein, that’s used in the animal feed industry.

“Walk down just about any aisle in the grocery store and you will see our customers,” says Fred White, a Vincent engineer. “Culled waste from producers of bagged salad. Orange juice. Paper products. Plastics. Eggs. Baby food. Frozen fried potato products. Frozen fried chicken nuggets. Corn sweeteners used in all colas. Corn oil ... instant coffee.”

The latest use — marijuana.

“Changing marijuana laws have opened up a significant market,” says Bob Johnston, the company’s president and senior engineer. “These are very small machines, weighing only 400 pounds. It turns out that this is an ideal size for extracting the oils from hemp. The dried marijuana is soaked in alcohol or hexane and then run through the press. The oils come out with the solvent and then later are recovered in a distillation process. This produces either the medicinal CBD or the addictive THC, depending on the type of hemp being processed. Presses for this application are being sent to California, Oregon, Washington and Colorado, but, so far, none are being used in Florida.”

Tags: Southwest, Technology/Innovation

Digital Access

DIRECT DIGITAL ACCESS
Add digital to your current subscription, purchase a single digital issue, or start a new subscription to Florida Trend.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
An overview of the features and articles in this month's issue of Florida Trend.

ACCESS THIS ISSUE »

Florida Business News

Florida Trend Video Pick

Miami Yacht Show to open in its new location
Miami Yacht Show to open in its new location

The 31st Miami Yacht Show, the city’s premier luxury yacht show, takes place from February 14 -18, 2019 in its new location at One Herald Plaza. See a video of preparation for the event.

Earlier Videos | Viewpoints@FloridaTrend

Ballot Box

Have you ever been the victim of a cyber crime?

  • No
  • Yes

See Results

Ballot Box
Subscribe