Thursday, June 25, 2009

Hemp




No, not that kind. That kind is pictured on the right. The kind I'm talking about is pictured on the left, and is a very different kind of hemp. It produces products like:



And:

The hemp plant can be used for it's fiber, seeds, seed meal and seed oil. The products that can be made from this versatile plant include: insulation, fiber board, animal bedding, lumber, pulp, plastic composites for automobiles, even combined with other products to produce ceramic tile, food, and health care products. And many, many more. And it is biodegradable.

In fact it's pest-resistant, requires no pesticides, fungicides, and very little herbicides. Unlike cotton. However, when blended with wool, cotton, or linen it produces a very breathable, cool, and comfortable fabric. It can be grown on a variety of soils but does best in the same soil as corn. YOU CANNOT GET HIGH on this type of hemp. IT CONTAINS NO THC. In fact it has an ingredient, CBD, that actually blocks a marijuana high. Sort of an anti-marijuana.

It is currently being grown in Canada and many other European countries, and is one of the oldest sources of textile fabrics used, mostly for sail cloth and rope. Car makers such as Henry Ford used hemp for a variety of strengthening fibers in his cars back in the day. The Mercedes C-Class currently has over 30 parts that contain natural fibers, including hemp. A hemp house is being built in South Dakota:

It's major benefits are saving trees from becoming lumber and pulp, and using a biodegradable product instead of plastic. But using less pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides is also detrimental to our ecosystems. These products are in our food, our clothes, our homes, our children. They wash into our streams, rivers, canals and eventually our oceans. I think it's time our country came out of the dark and into the light about this product. What do you think?


27 comments:

MzzLily said...

The old hemp rope factory stands vacant near the center of town. It was a major employer in Xenia for a long time.

Jeninacide said...

We definitely need to drop the stigma attached to hemp and get on with using it as as sustainable resource!

Meeko Fabulous said...

Nancy! I want to know what website you got those pictures from! I want to go shopping now! :)

Lover of Life/ Nancy said...

Meeko - Great idea!
http://everything.hemp.com/

ellen abbott said...

Without a doubt. I can't believe how often this countries shoots itself in the foot. With this hemp ban though they are shooting off a whole leg.

Decriminalize hemp!

Phoebe Miriah Kirby said...

And my mom thought I was crazy for making ALL of my jewelry out of hemp rope. My husband and I have been on a partial organic diet for almost one year. It's so expensive.
Along with making hemp more widespread, our country should make healthy, ORGANIC food less expensive so even lower class people can choose to protect their families against the dangers of our food today.

Lover of Life/ Nancy said...

Phoebe - Everyone should have access to clean, healthy food, for sure.

Kathy G said...

I agree with you that there needs to be a large-scale education program about hemp. I'd love to use it, but until its stigma has been removed I don't think I will.

In my previous job I tutored teens who were working a Twelve-Step recovery program, and I tried to stay away from ANYTHING that would remind them of their previous life (i.e., hemp, rightly or wrongly). I'm still in contact with a few of them, and I'm not going to jeopardize their (sometimes) fragile sobriety!

Brian Miller said...

i think it is a great idea to look at products that will allow us to conserve our environment through conservation and protection. better than filling our land fills with junk our ancestors will dig up.

Reya Mellicker said...

I have a pair of J-41 shoes that are made of hemp and post-consumer recycled stuff. They are so so so groovy, comfortable, too.

It's time to switch over to sustainable products. We're doing it! Yay!!

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

I am totally in favor of getting the word out on the correct hemp! It is such a shame that our food products are laced with the chemicals that are injected(cattle) or sprayed(crops). Living here in the Dakotas, a major farming state, corn is planted as round up ready and sprayed heavily throughout the growing season. Feedlots abound where cattle are fed garbage...literally...to fatten them up for market. It is no wonder that so many more illnesses have cropped up.

bellybutton said...

When this country was founded it was required, as a land owner, to grow hemp for all the reasons you have stated and it grows very quickly.
It is many times more productive for fuel as well, compared to corn.

Yes! we can

::

scarlethue said...

I've always though hemp should be legalized. Of course I think all marijuana should be legal, but that's another story....

Valerie said...

An interesting post. I had no idea hemp was so useful. Agree with Brian about the landfill sites.

Joanne said...

I like this idea, this broadening our thinking. It would be nice to hear of more innovative resources like hemp. Hey, anything that reduces our obsession with plastic sounds good to me.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

So, where does one find the seed to grow the hemp? I grow corn, hence I have soil good for hemp. We are so wasteful as a country..... and smug about it, too. I cringe when I see all the garbage that accumulates at my campground in just one weekend. We sift through some of it and retrieve the aluminum. We have receptacles for just that purpose all through the park. No matter they will still toss the cans in the regular trash and dirty diapers in the receptacles labeled for cans.........

Bogey said...

Hemp rope used to be a favourite of 'Hanging Judges' back in the ol' cowboy days. Tshirts from hemp are virtually indestrucable. Great post Nancy.

Lover of Life/ Nancy said...

Kathy - It is illegal to grow in the US.

California Girl said...

Since I'm on a Green Team in our valley, I'm all for anything that reduces dependence on non biodegradable products. I'm hoping the current recession will spur people to recycle, reuse and renew. We have to hurry, though.

luksky said...

I totally agree....but why would I government ever do anything that made sense?????? They obviously can't profit off of it in any way....

Whitney Lee said...

With all of the pros, can someone please explain to me what the holdup is?

Rachael said...

I totally agree with you! There is no reason why we should not be using more "friendly" resources. Especially one so versatile. Unfortunately, it seems that our government has other agendas when it comes to helping our economy and environment. They seem to not care what is better for us if it does not benefit them in some way. Rather than allow us the opportunity of another cash crop, we instead get to be taxed to death as if throwing money at the problem is going to fix it.

Sorry... I'll get off my box. LOL! You touched on something I am very passionate about, and hemp is only one example of eco-friendly options that would help the environment AND the economy, if only they were implemented into the mainstream.

Thanks for putting this out there! Education and awareness are the first steps to improvement! :)

DJan said...

Hemp is illegal in this country because it is associated with marijuana. Sometimes I wonder about how our country is run. We lock up people for victimless crimes like smoking pot and then block useful industries like hemp production, just because of its association. Will we ever learn?

Jo said...

I guess the problem is that your government figures if people started growing "legal" hemp it would be indiscernible from "illegal" hemp. In Canada, marijuana is legal (for medicinal purposes...) and the largest marijuana growth industry is right here in BC. ("BC bud" is world famous).

But, as you say, industrial hemp is not the same as marijuana, and it is actually a wonderful organic product from which to make all sort of things.

Maybe you can educate the powers-that-be. :-)

janis said...

Hmm, I did not realize that there are two types of hemp! Thank you for the education. Recently my youngest daughter had to have that awful alergy testing where they inject several types of things to find what all you are allergic to. Hemp is one of the things she IS allergic to. She asked why on earth did they put that on the test list? I explained, well, how about your Tanning Bed lotion? Sure enough, HEMP.

susan said...

It's way past time as it's also time to call the drug war ended and move on.

asweetcakes said...

Really. And a house!! I'm going to share this with my office since we're into environmental issues. My boss will love this lol. ...and a house?? For real?