Without sounding cliche, it seems to me the question is more what can’t Hemp do? Let’s start with a list of basic products that can be created from Hemp plant. Also remember, Hemp is Cannabis, here we go.. Food & Nutrition – Hemp seeds and Hemp oil are very nutritious and to some people delicious, Cannabis is the only plant (we know of) that contains all of the essential fatty acids and amino acids required by the human body. Body Care – As a result of the high concentration of beneficial oils hemp is a superior alternative to the petroleum based cosmetics most people currently use. Paper – some think this material combined with Randolph Hearst’s ownership of tree pulp processing plants and newspapers was the cause of Hemp being outlawed. The Hemp plant is a perfect material fo making paper, Hemp regenerates in months as opposed to decades for trees and has been used as a paper source for thousands of years. Fuel – Until the late 1800’s Hemp oil was a common lamp oil fuel. Today Hemp oil can be used to create biofuels for diesel engines while creating less greenhouse gasses diminishing our reliance on fossil fuels with Hemp as a renewable resource. Textiles and Rope – Hemp has been used for millennia to make fabrics which are more durable than cotton, the origial Levi’s were made of Hemp fabric while Hemp ropes have been used since the beginning of time. During WW II it was the “duty” of the American farmer to grow Hemp for the war effort much of which was used for ropes and riggings for the US Navy.
Plastics – While most plastic products are made from fossil fuels a wide variety of those plastics could be made from Hemp. In 1941 Henry Ford produced a car made almost entirely from the Hemp plant, this car was so strong that at a press conference Ford struck the car with an axe to show the strength of his Hemp based car body. Unfortunately the Hemp car was never produced. Building Materials – This ever expanding category can now lay claim to products like Hempcrete™ which is a lightweight waterproof self insulating concrete. Hemp materials can also replace wood, shingles, and paint products just to name a few. I would be easy to say that Thomas Jefferson summed up Hemp nicely when he said “Hemp is of first necessity to the wealth and protection of the country”.
What can Hemp do:
- Replace trees for paper fiber products
- Create biofuels with less greenhouse emmissions
- Replace petroleum based chemicals for plastics production
- Supplement our nutritional needs
And if that’s not enough for you there are the incredible medicinal properties which are being discovered everyday by science, even the US Government (Dept. of Health and Human Services) filed a Patent on the effects of CBD, a naturally derived Cannabinoid from the Hemp plant. There are manufactures out there right now creating incredible products from the Hemp plant. The future holds great promise for Hemp but it will take all of us in a concerted effort to bring the full potential of Hemp to the US and the world, one vote and/or product at a time. Your comments and commentaries are welcome 🙂