Editors Note: This is a guest post.
Humans and hemp have a long history of harmonious cultivation, with hemp often cited as the first plant to be used as a textile. This usage, along with countless others that include everything from beauty products to medicine, creates a historical narrative that dates the first use of hemp as cloth back to around 8,000 BC and the modern-day area of Iraq and Iran – previously known as Mesopotamia.
Hemp is said to have arrived in Europe from China in approximately 1,200 BC, before spreading widely throughout the ancient world in various employments, many of which continue to our present day.
A modern-day staple
Cut to today and hemp is used for a range of commercial and industrial products that include a wide range of textiles, shoes, food, paper, rope, bioplastics, insulation, and biofuel. Elsewhere, CBD is being extracted from the plant to produce high-quality oils and other products for individual consumption.
The United States has nearly a 100-year history of legalizing the use of marijuana, with the first Marijuana Tax Act coming into effect in 1937.
Since then, the growing market for marijuana products has given rise to a whole industry of hemp farms across the USA. Cope CBD, a high-CBD hemp farm in Colorado, is just one example of a hemp farm that product manufacturers can purchase industry quality CBD from and create their private brands.
Is hemp environmentally friendly?
With hemp continuing to be in high demand, questions surrounding its sustainability as a pioneering crop are raised. Yet, thankfully, hemp stands up to the test.
In comparison with cotton, which contributes to around 50% of the world’s pesticides and herbicides use, hemp needs no additional protection and requires a much more moderate use of fertilizer.
Hemp is not only gentle on the earth, but lives in accord with it, returning an estimated 60% – 70% of the nutrients it takes back to the soil. The plant is also frost resistant, making it perfect for growing in all 50 USA states and a conscientious choice for product makers.
In comparison with other crops, one acre of Hemp produces as much fiber as two to three acres of cotton annually. This valuable reduction in space makes hemp a cost-effective alternative to its textile cousin, cotton, as well as being environmentally friendlier since it uses less water as well. Hemp uses roughly 50% less water than its cotton counterpart and produces up to double the amount of fiber than the same amount of cotton.
A crop for a brighter future
With such benefits in mind, hemp looks set to become mainstream as consumer pressure continues to see manufacturers move towards more sustainable and greener options. From an environmental and economic perspective, hemp appears a clear winner for a more ethical choice.