The marijuana revolution is in full swing. Across the country, this miracle plant is being legalized and de-stigmatized, thanks to doctors, scientists and activists. Despite being recognized for medicinal benefits, there’s still plenty more work to do on researching and educating the public about this plant.
For example, most people are unaware of an entire category of the cannabis plant: hemp! This giant “weed” isn’t a drug, it contains virtually no THC, but has an endless amount of industrial uses. Hemp is a plant that has been used for centuries, all the way back to 8000 B.C. in fact.
Just how versatile is hemp? Well, hemp products cover a plethora of categories, including clothing, food, transportation, medicine, and building materials.
Here are just 7 ways that hemp is changing the world and improving lives.
1. Hemp Biofuel
Biofuel is one of the unsung heroes of green, alternative energy. It may not be making big waves for the consumer auto market, but it is definitely a big topic for commercial truck drivers. Hemp biofuel makes for a strong, efficient, and emission-friendly gas for diesel trucks.
If the legal restrictions on hemp production would be lifted, it would be the most successful domestically-produced biofuel for the U.S. Just how efficient is hemp biofuel? Well, Hemp biodiesel produced by graduate students at the University of Connecticut had a 97% conversion efficiency.
Now that’s what we call an outstanding endorsement for green transportation.
2. Personal Hygiene Products
Oils, creams, lotions, and soaps are some of the most popular hemp products on the market. That’s because they are some of the best organic alternatives to the big brands that carry dangerous chemicals. One of the most recognized organic brands, Dr. Bronner’s, carries a dedicated line of hemp hygiene products.
Hemp’s natural oils most closely resemble the skin’s. The powerful antioxidant qualities heal while strengthening the body’s immune defenses.
3. Hemp Baking Powder
Nature’s bakery is in the form of hemp baking powder. More than 20 amino acids provide countless health benefits. The powder itself tastes great and can be used in shakes, cookies, baked into breads, and even pastries.
Hemp powder has a much fiber concentration, which makes it great for homemade bread, batter, and pasta. Unlike most fried recipes, hemp batter won’t make you feel bloated or nauseous. Hemp powder is good for the digestive tract thanks to its restorative healing properties.
4. Hemp Cannabidiol
The CBD, cannabidiol, market is on-track to be a billion dollar industry. CBD is normally associated with marijuana, but it can also be synthesized from hemp. Hemp cannabidiol contains virtually no THC, despite being concentrated. CBD oils are taken as medicinal tinctures as alternatives to prescriptions.
In the event that side-effects are either too dangerous or uncomfortable, hemp CBD oils offer a safe and natural alternative. Early research has found that CBD oils can help treat anxiety, epileptic seizures, chronic inflammation, glaucoma, and cancer. If you’re interested in trying it for yourself, there are plenty of affordable, trustworthy stores online, so check it out!
5. Clothing and Accessories
Clothes made from hemp fibers are like high-tech synthetic fibers, only much cheaper and accessible. Hemp products combine the best qualities together in one package. Hemp fibers are breathable like cotton, durable like jeans, and fade-resistant.
Most importantly, hemp is a sustainable textile, it uses half the water of cotton crops and doesn’t need any pesticides.
Hemp fiber can be used to make soft, long-lasting t-shirts, socks that won’t tear, and even boots that can wick water that are mold-resistant.
Hemp shopping bags are particularly popular items. They advertise to the public that hemp is the greenest of all materials. While plastic bags litter the Earth, hemp bags are completely biodegradable.
Hemp is often interwoven with other fabrics, such as cotton, to combine the best textures and traits of all materials.
6. Hemp Rugs and Tapestries
Continuing the theme of durability and fashion, hemp-made mats, rugs, and tapestries can literally take a beating. It doesn’t matter what you’ve managed to track onto them, hemp rugs provide the perfect surface to trap dirt and foreign objects. The strong fibers won’t fray or break over time, making it very affordable and low-maintenance for homeowners.
7. Animal Bedding
This is one of the many industrial material uses of hemp. In this case, hemp makes for extremely cost-effective animal bedding for farm animals. Hemp crops produce more material per square-yard than all other crops, i.e. corn, wheat, or rice.
It grows amazingly fast, as much as 150 times faster than trees and makes four times as much fiber per acre. It’s a super weed that every farmer wants to grow, so maybe one day the govt will catch up to hemp, like marijuana.
When it comes to animal bedding, hemp products are great at retaining moisture, holding over four times its own weight. Unlike straw, hemp doesn’t create excessive dust or break up easily. There is no suffocating smell from hemp bedding and is inherently anti-bacterial.
It’s not uncommon for animals, such as horses, to be allergic to both common bedding materials of straw and pine. Farmers can also save big by switching to hemp bedding. It produces less waste and requires a lower overall investment.
Finding the Best Hemp Products
With the popularity of hemp products increasing, you’re going to see a lot of new brands and products on shelves and online. It’s important that you have as much information on your side as possible. Not all brands prioritize quality, of course.
Our blog will be focusing on green products like hemp and all things eco-friendly to show you what to look for when shopping for you home and family. As we add new guides, like this one, you’ll be better informed to get the most environmentally and economically-sound products.
For those of you who have your own ideas or experiences you would like to share, feel free to contact us. We always love hearing feedback from our readers and how our advice has helped you on your journey to lowering our carbon footprint.
It’s up to us to save the planet, we only have one, so why not bring a tougher, greener hemp into your life?