My name is Stephen Eigenmann and I have been involved with producing apparel since I was 16 years old. After graduating from college, I was involved with a small team of entrepreneurs who developed a raw healthy juice vending machine concept called JuiceBot, it was then where I learned about the benefits of organic, sustainable products. During this time, I was working in sales and marketing from 2015 – 2018. After leaving the Los Angeles-based startup I shifted my focus to the industrial hemp industry where I gained an understanding of the benefits of the industrial hemp plant and the new legalization of CBD. I soon realized that I could reincorporate my passion for apparel while utilizing my enhanced mindset and understanding of how important organic, sustainable products are for our world, our bodies, and our land.
Throughout the end of 2018 and all of 2019, I immersed myself in the Minnesota industrial hemp world. I attended events, volunteered, and gained as much knowledge as I could surrounding industrial hemp and its diverse number of applications. I started buying hemp products for myself and others to use and started to begin the sourcing process of quality hemp fiber textile products. Through my networking in the industry, I made deeper connections.
I now work with fifth-generation natural fiber textile industry professionals. The products that I source come from certified organic fibers that have been held to a certified standard throughout the entire process of creation. This includes the factory, the people, and the farms. Natural hemp fiber products feel different than traditional cotton or synthetic garments. Our products are stronger, yet comfortably scratchy, but they get softer with every wash and additional use. We recommend washing once before wearing and hang drying to get a softer feel.
We ordered our first large order of samples in March of 2020, which was right when people in Minnesota started working from home and getting an idea of the new normal. We had plans to participate in events and promote our product in person, so this was definitely a challenge. Taking a different path due to the pandemic led to me focusing on this more than just a part-time job. I quit my full-time job in June of 2020 after realizing I wasn’t fulfilled in my sales role at my previous company.
Quitting my job and working long hours has been a challenge, but besides the obstacles that everyone is dealing with, it has been a great learning experience.
We have found it challenging to express how different the material is until it is in the hands of our prospective customers and clients. The amount of value that industrial hemp clothing packs are beyond our comprehension. We are continuing to find the right mix of in-person and online promotion. We signed up for Brand Builders Market in April of 2021, just over a year after starting our company. This has proved to be helpful in understanding how we fit into traditional retail.
We’ve been impressed with OG Hemp Goods, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
We are a mission-based industrial hemp company that is making industrial hemp fiber products more accessible for Americans.
We understand that industrial hemp fiber was banned for import until after 1991 and that Minnesota had a strong background in growing Industrial Hemp leading up to World War II and even during the war when America’s supply of industrial hemp was cut off by the Japanese and the government launched the “Hemp for Victory” campaign.
We specialize in sourcing high-quality hemp garments for all sizes, our products are certified organic and we are continuing to develop new offerings that make industrial hemp fiber products more accessible for Americans.
We want people to know that OG Hemp Goods is accessible and high quality and available online and at brand builders markets across the twin cities.