Hemp is the most versatile plant on the planet. It grows throughout the world and has been used as an agricultural crop for 12,000 years. Hemp is commonly seen throughout our history and heritage. The Gutenburg Bible (15th Century) and the King James Bible (17th Century) were printed on hemp paper; our rich history of art was painted on hemp canvas. The Royal Navy would not have been able to circumnavigate the globe without ropes and sails made from hemp.
Hemp is by far the most valuable industrial crop we have and by switching to hemp, we can help towards many of the world’s problems:
-Hemp yields 4 times the output of trees for paper. Nobody likes deforestation; we can stop over 40% of this destruction by switching to hemp paper.
-Hemp plastics can be compostable unlike fossil fuel versions we currently use which break down and bio-accumulate in the food chain and the oceans. We want to see toxic packaging replaced with hemp.
-Hemp can replace most fossil fuel products from fuel and lubricants to paints and varnishes.
-Hemp clothes are 4 times stronger than cotton. Most cotton is GM, growing it uses 50% of the world’s agricultural water, 25% of all pesticides and it uses herbicides which poison the soil. Hemp requires none of this; it can be grown organically on marginal land, it accumulates minerals in the soil and it breaks up the soil pan.
-Hempcrete can be used as a replacement for concrete to build carbon negative, non toxic homes. The growth of hemp and the process absorbs carbon compared to concrete which releases 1.5 tons of co2 per ton.
-Hemp insulation can replace poisonous asbestos / plastic products.
-Hemp seeds and oil contain omegas 3, 6 and 9 essential & non essential fatty acids and produces more easily absorbed protein than any other crop.
-The HempChar project is a research project designed to restore our soils for food security for future generations. Hemp as a rotation crop, combined with biochar production, can draw down carbon from the atmosphere and re-build our soil health.
-Hemp can be used for phyto-remediation as it absorb toxins, heavy metals and even radiation from the soil. Hemp was grown on a massive scale following the Chernobyl nuclear disaster for this reason.
You can walk into any large supermarket today and buy hemp seed, hemp seed oil and hemp milk. You can buy hemp clothing, hemp paper, hemp cars and hemp building materials. So why is it, that hemp is the only industrial crop that needs a license from the Home Office?
The Latin name for hemp is ‘Cannabis sativa L.’ Yes, hemp is part of the cannabis family but it is completely non-psychoactive as it only contains a minute amount of THC (less than 0.2%), the psychoactive compound in recreational or medical cannabis which creates a high.
In 1992, scientists discovered a system in our bodies which regulates our health. They called it the endo-cannabinoid system. Every mammal on the planet is born with an endo-cannabinoid system and this system creates homeostasis (balance). When working properly, this system prevents us from getting ill. There are many factors which can prevent this system from working properly and this can lead to us becoming prone to dis-ease.
Cannabinoids are found in abundance in plants from the cannabis species, including of course hemp. These cannabinoids, used as a food supplement, can protect and re-boot our endo-cannabinoid system to help maintain our health. Denying our bodies of cannabinoids would be similar to denying our bodies from nutrients and vitamins. Without them, illness is inevitable.
Cannabinoid supplements from hemp are commonly referred to as CBD products (Cannabidiol, CBD is the most abundant cannabinoid found in hemp). The UK CBD market is the largest in Europe and it is estimated that over 1 million people in the UK use these supplements. The European CBD market is estimated to be worth 500 million Euros.
Medicinal cannabis derived from the other species of cannabis which can contain varying amounts of THC. Although medical cannabis was legalised in the UK (1st Novemeber 2018), it is largely inaccessible to those who need it. Cannabis has been used as a medicine for thousands of years around the world. The first recorded use was in China around 3000BC. During Victorian times, cannabis tinctures were the most commonly used analgesic within the British Empire after opium proved to be dangerously addictive. Scientific evidence has shown that medicinal cannabis can help with a wide range of diseases. It has been legalised across South and North America, Canada and in 11 European States, including Germany.
HempTank is the UK’s think tank on hemp policy development. We have utilised the greatest minds within the hemp industry and the medicinal cannabis science community and we are committed to guiding policy and breaking down barriers which are currently preventing this plant from being utilised for its many industrial, nutritional and medicinal properties.
Together we will be creating an historical event which will see sustainable industry across the UK, creating hemp paper, hemp plastics, hemp clothing and many others. You will be helping to protect the CBD industry and the emergence of the medical cannabis industry.
Scientific climate data shows that we have entered the sixth mass extinction (we have lost 60% of our wildlife since 1970). We have very little time in which to create a carbon zero economy. Hemp can be the catalyst to creating a Green Industrial Revolution in a short space of time.
Imagine a future with a green industry which is ethical, responsible, non corporate and led by the people of Great Britain.
Together we can do this.