History of Hemp
To be clear, Hemp is NOT Marijuana.
Both plants are part of the Cannabis genus, but industrial hemp contains <0.3% of THC.
For over 10,000 years, Hemp has been cultivated and used by humans as an important source of food and fiber. It was used by ancient China, Mesopotamians, the Egyptians, and the Romans. It also played a major part in the growth of the British Empire and the USA.
Hemp seeds are one of the only plant-based proteins that have a full amino acid profile which is perfect for strength athletes, yogis and anyone who wants to stay healthy. Its oils such as CBD oil also has a huge number of benefits, it is one of the strongest anti-oxidants which is why it has been shown to help treat & prevent cancer cell growth, anxiety and depression.
The industrial applications of hemp plants started as simple rope and coarsely woven fabric. During the 16th century Britain, it was mainly used in the making of sails, ship rope. If wound in the correct way hemp rope has a tensile strength 10x stronger than steel! This made hemp perfect for fishing and is part of the reason the British won so many wars, their sales and rope lasted longer in the harsh seas than their enemies.
Fast forward to the 1930s, Hemp was used to make army parachutes, the US flag and building material. Henry Ford even made a super strong, lightweight car from it (honestly look it up on YouTube it is amazing). The trouble began when people figured out you can use hemp to make paper, it was stronger, you didn’t need to bleach it as you do with timber and Hemp grows much faster than trees. This became a problem for the man who owned the paper, timber and newspaper industry, the man in question is William Randolph Hearst. He owned huge frosts around the world where he would cut down trees to make paper, sell the paper and use the rest to print his newspapers on. If farmers started growing more hemp to sell to paper companies all his forest land would be economically useless to him. To combat this he flooded his newspapers with inaccurate, racist and fear-provoking propaganda on marijuana and claimed that the two plants were “the devils' cabbage”. Unfortunately, it worked and the government made hemp illegal to grow in 1937.
The good news is in recent years many countries have made hemp legal again. The Hemp Farming Act of 2018, part of the 2018 Farm Bill was signed which changed hemp from a controlled substance to an agricultural commodity in the US!
We hope hemp will continue to grow in popularity so that it can be used to build strong Eco-houses, Eco-cars, Eco-fuels, clothing, plastics and Yoga mats ;)
This wonderful plant can help solve 100’s of issues the human race face, economically, environmentally and medically. Hemp will help the world become more sustainable allowing us to heal our planet and our bodies!