Hemp is an annual plant that can reach heights over twelve feet and is similar to the plants used for the production of cannabis and marijuana.
However, this plant is very different from them, so that confusion has been caused by deliberate misinformation with far-reaching effects on environmental as well as on socioeconomic matters.
The historical evidence showed that hemp was used even in the period between about 5000 – 7000 BC. Seed husks of this plant have been found at Neolithic burial sites in central Europe, which point to its use in funeral rites and shamanic ceremonies.
In the US, there have long been numerous regulations and rules in place regarding the cultivation of hemp.
Less than a century ago hemp cultivation was not just encouraged, but mandatory, so, even some farmers who refused to grow it, had to pay hefty fines. But, today’s regulations strongly prohibit any cultivation of hemp.
Actually, industrial hemp has very low levels of the psychoactive constituent, called Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and its personal psychoactive use will never be dangerous.
If marijuana that can be smoked usually contains between 5-10%t THC, industrial hemp contains about one-tenth of that.
Furthermore, industrial hemp has higher concentrations of a chemical called Cannabidiol (CBD). This component has the ability to lessen the psychoactive effects of THC when smoked in conjunction.
Hemp is a very similar crop to bamboo, and its stalk contains the fiber and hard, woody core material that can be used for a variety of purposes, even carpentry.
The primary reason why is not allowed to grow hemp because it has too many abundant resources for fuel, housing, food, medicine that corporations cannot exploit. Also, many polluting conglomerates would go down if hemp was permitted as a resource, such as the oil, pharmaceutical, supplement, and constructions industries.
- The fiber from hemp is good for a durable paper
- Hemp has the strongest natural fibers
- It can be used not just to produce rough cloth (sails or canvass), but also durable work clothes, like the original jeans.
- Hemp fibers can be used in a modern building material, an application that has been spearheaded and exploited successfully in France.
- Back in 1941, Henry Ford built a car that was entirely built from ‘hemp plastic’,
- Car manufacturers are again turning to hemp as a resource to provide light-weight, yet shock absorbent and environmentally friendly material for their cars.
Some Facts on Hemp
- Hemp is Earth’s number-one biomass resource;
- The capability of production can be 10 tons per acre in four months.
- Farming, only 6% of the continental U.S. land with biomass crops would be enough for all of the America’s energy needs.
- Biomass can be converted to methanol, methane, or gasoline at a cost comparable to petroleum, and hemp is much better for the environment.
- Hemp can produce more methanol than corn (about 10 times).
- Hemp fuel burns clean, while petroleum causes acid rain due to sulfur pollution.
- Using hemp fuel will not contribute to global warming.
This oil is of very high quality and the industry is using it in paints, inks, and varnishes. Recently, the food industry showed, also a great interest in discovering its virtues, as the hempseed oil is one of the richest sources of essential amino acids and essential fatty acids.
It provides an excellent balance between omega-3, -6 and -9 fatty acids. Essential fatty acids play a role in reducing bad cholesterol and plaque, which is responsible for arteriosclerosis.
This fact attracts Healthfood companies, which started experiments with hemp as a basis for a large range of products (e.g. hemp seed bars, to gummi bears, beer, hemp cheese and many more).
Hemp Oil Uses
It can be used as a substitute for every application that uses petroleum for its skin and hair products, as well as in many health issues as either a pain reducer or even as the cure for it.
- Thanks to the natural moisturizing effects of the oil, it can be applied after a shower or a bath. Massaging your body with it will nourish the skin and increase the blood circulation.
- Used in cooking – It gives a slightly nutty and crispy taste to food, and can be the perfect salad oil. Be aware – it is not suitable for high heat cooking.
- Can be used as biodiesel in the same manner as other vegetable oils. As it is non-toxic and doesn’t harm the environment it can be a safe replacement for petroleum.
- Instead of using petroleum as a base for plastic production, the hemp oil will be a safe alternative. This plastic doesn’t release harmful chemicals while decomposition, like that one made on petroleum bases.
- Use in the production of paints as it doesn’t cause any harmful releases when washed down from the drain
- Hemp oil prevents skin disorders (psoriasis, acne, eczema, and dry skin).
Why is non-psychoactive Hemp illegal?
The root of a problem – money. Another question here is ‘who benefits from hemp being illegal?’
The logical answer to this question is – the oil companies- and their shareholders. The illegalization of the hemp became at the time when oil was beginning to make an impact on the economy as a base material for many things.
Seeing the possibility of hemp to replace oil for many purposes, including textiles and fibers (plastics), cosmetics and fuel, it was restricted or even forbidden.
In some states, technically, hemp is not illegal to grow, but it requires obtaining a special permit from the drug enforcement agency (DEA), which is tending to restrict mass production.
These permits are rarely given out and there are special requirements about the security measures such as fences, security guards, razor wire, or dogs.
You can see that the hemp is immensely valuable plant and by using it you can solve many of your environmental and health problems.
However, because farmers are prohibited from cultivating this crop, its import made it very expensive.
Industrial hemp is a plant of the future, as it could transform the economy of the world States in a positive and beneficial way, and therefore should be exploited to its full potential.