Industrial Hemp

Hemp Bast Fibres

(Hemp Bast Fibres) "Hemp bast fibres are among the strongest and most durable of natural fibres, with high tensile strength, wet strength, and other characteristics favourable for various industrial products. It has been estimated that hemp produces three to four times as much useable fibre per acre per year as forests, and the bast fibre contains a low amount of lignin (the natural polymer that binds plant cells together), which allows it to be bleached without the use of chlorine.

Hemp in US History

(Hemp in US History) "During World War I, some hemp cultivation occurred in several states, including Kentucky, Wisconsin, California, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, Kansas, and Iowa (Ehrensing 1998). The second world war led to a brief revival of hemp cultivation in the Midwest, as well as in Canada, because the war cut off supplies of fiber (substantial renewed cultivation also occurred in Germany for the same reason). Until the beginning of the 19th century, hemp was the leading cordage fiber.

Hemp History

(Hemp History) "Probably indigenous to temperate Asia, C. sativa is the most widely cited example of a “camp follower.” It was pre-adapted to thrive in the manured soils around man’s early settlements, which quickly led to its domestication (Schultes 1970). Hemp was harvested by the Chinese 8500 years ago (Schultes and Hofmann 1980). For most of its history, C. sativa was most valued as a fiber source, considerably less so as an intoxicant, and only to a limited extent as an oilseed crop.

Hemp and Nutrition

(Hemp and Nutrition) "The quality of an oil or fat is most importantly determined by its fatty acid composition. Hemp is of high nutritional quality because it contains high amounts of unsaturated fatty acids, mostly oleic acid (C18:1, 10%–16%), linoleic acid (C18:2, 50%–60%), alpha-linolenic acid (C18:3, 20%–25%), and gammalinolenic acid (C18:3, 2%–5%) (Fig. 37). Linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid are the only two fatty acids that must be ingested and are considered essential to human health (Callaway 1998).

Production Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana

(Production Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana) "Production differences depend on whether the cannabis plant is grown for fiber/oilseed or for medicinal/recreational uses. These differences involve the varieties being grown, the methods used to grow them, and the timing of their harvest (see discussion in 'Hemp' and 'Marijuana,' below). Concerns about cross-pollination among the different varieties are critical. All cannabis plants are open, wind and/or insect pollinated, and thus cross-pollination is possible.

Countries Which Grow Hemp

(Countries Which Grow Hemp) "Approximately 30 countries in Europe, Asia, and North and South America currently permit farmers to grow hemp. Some of these countries never outlawed production, while some countries banned production for certain periods in the past. China is among the largest producing and exporting countries of hemp textiles and related products, as well as a major supplier of these products to the United States. The European Union (EU) has an active hemp market, with production in most member nations.

DEA and Other Federal Agencies Versus Congress and the States Regarding Hemp Production

"Federal law prohibits cultivation of cannabis without a permit, and DEA enforces standards governing the security conditions under which the crop must be grown. In other words, a grower needs to get permission from DEA to grow cannabis or faces the possibility of federal charges or property confiscation, regardless of whether the grower has a state-issued permit.67

Estimated Size and Value of the US Retail Market for Hemp Products

"No official estimates are available of the value of U.S. sales of hemp-based products. The Hemp Industries Association (HIA) reports total U.S. retail sales of hemp products of nearly $700 million in 2016,12 which includes food and body products, dietary supplements, clothing, auto parts, building materials, and other consumer products (Figure 2). HIA claims that U.S. hemp retail sales have increased by about 10% to more than 20% annually since 2011. Much of this growth is attributable to sales of hemp-based body products, supplements, and foods.