“Why use up the forests which were centuries in the making and the mines which required ages to lay down, if we can get the equivalent of forest and mineral products in the annual growth of the Hemp fields?” – Henry Ford (Founder of Ford Motor Company)
Hemp Products has been used for thousands of years for basic human necessities such as clothes, food, shelter and energy. However, due to lack of information and misguided fear, it was banned from several countries as it was considered an intoxicating plant. Recently this ban has been lifted for good and is being appreciated for all its qualities. It is known as a God plant due to its versatility and ability to replace fossil fuels, plastic, coal, wood and even car components.
Hemp Products to Daily Life for a sustainable living
Human civilization is at the cusp of irreversible danger which is causing a baffling, fearsome and alarming state. We now face the challenge of replacing materials used in everyday life with biodegradable yet effective resources. This quest has led us back to our roots and to Hemp; brewing a new kind of revolution. As mentioned, Hemp can be used to replace many harmful ingredients and the following points are only the tip of the iceberg, as we have just started discovering the benefits of Hemp. This is just the beginning.
“Growing Hemp as nature designed it is vital to our urgent need to reduce greenhouse gases and ensure the survival of our planet.”- Jack Herer (American Author)
Since Hemp is essentially a weed (with negligible THC, i.e. less than 0.03%- responsible for intoxication), it grows prolifically with less amount of water, without pesticides and much care. Its broad leave prohibits sunlight, inhibiting the growth of other harmful plants reducing the need for heavy herbicides. It can be used as phytoremediation; a bioremediation process that uses various types of plants to remove, transfer, stabilize, and destroy contaminants in the soil and groundwater. It is a food for the earth as once its roots and leaves fall to the ground; it nourished the soil with much needed nitrogen.
Natural Filter of Air
“Since 1937, about half the forests in the world have been cut down to make paper. If Hemp had not been outlawed, most would still be standing, oxygenating the planet” – Alan Bock
Hemp acts as a healing agent to the environment. It acts as a carbon sink to reduce greenhouse gases. The pollution in air and carbon content has been increasing substantially while we have not done much about it. Growing more plants and trees has been our priority, but have we been able to do that enough? Instead of producing a large number of trees, we should focus on growing few acres of Hemp. It has been proven to absorb more CO2 per hectare than any forest or any other commercial crop.
Hemp For All
“Imagine people growing Hemp and making everything from food to fuel without petroleum!”- Josh Tickell (Movie Director)
Every part of the Hemp can be used; nothing goes to waste with it.
- You can use its fibres to make paper, canvas, rope and textiles.
- You can use it to make the fabric more durable than cotton. In fact, the oldest woven fabric was made out of Hemp.
- You can use its oil as fuel, for making plastic and especially for consumption as it is a rich source of essential fatty acids such as Omega-3 and Omega-6.
- You can also use the oil as paints, adhesives and for cooking.
- You can use it to make fibreglass, fibreboard and in Hempcrete.
- You can use Hemp to build walls, pipes and foundations of houses as it is fireproof, waterproof, pest repellant and self-insulating.
- You can use hemp oil to create biofuels to replace gasoline for diesel engines, and biofuels are renewable unlike fossil fuels.
- It is also used to absorb nuclear radiations from the environment.
Though we are still discovering the many qualities of Hemp, we must remember that it has existed for thousands of years and many civilizations have used it for different purposes. China has been using it for centuries, and they have discovered its countless uses and benefits, securing over half of the 606 hemp patents recorded by the UN’s World Intellectual Property Organisation in 2014. India itself has a long history with Hemp despite banning it in 1984. Infact, an ancient Hindu text ‘Atharva Veda’ even calls Cannabis sativa, “sacred grass” worn by Lord Shiva.