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Why is Hemp So Great?

hemp is awesomeFirst of all, hemp is awesome.  There are so many uses for hemp from food to fuel to home insulation.

One thing is that hemp is extremely versatile.  You can use either the seeds or the fiber.  From hemp seeds, you can make milk, oil, or other foodstuffs.  It’s a source of omega-3s, protein, and calcium.   The fiber is used for paper, clothing, jewelry, and lots more

Hemp has been used as a material throughout time.  The Western Han Dynasty in China used hemp paper as far back as 200 BC and historically hemp ropes have been used by sailors.  In recent years, hemp has been making a comeback in terms of popularity because it’s touted as an eco-friendly alternative to a variety of common materials.

Various studies have compared hemp to the eco-friendliness of other products.  For instance, while cotton requires less energy to grow and process than hemp, it does use a lot of land. Cotton requires approximately twice as much land as hemp.  

The big one is WATER.  Cotton also uses a lot of water and tends to be grown in areas where there isn’t as much water, like California, Texas, dry areas of China, and Egypt.  The cotton plant needs about 50% more water per season than hemp.

Hemp also requires less pesticides than cotton.  In fact, it be grown without pesticides and herbicides and it uses very little fertilizer, making it easy to grow in a sustainable manner.

Hemp makes awesome paper.  Hemp paper is of superior quality versus tree-based paper.  Hemp paper lasts longer than regular paper AND it can be recycled more times than tree-based paper.  

For clothing, hemp is extremely durable.  In the past, it had a reputation for being used for rugged/earthy-looking clothes, but now you can find even high-end fashion made from hemp.  It also works great for shoes and bags.  

Hemp is a great, eco-friendly alternative to cotton.  Between the water savings and how long-lasting the products are, it’s a clear winner in terms of green textiles.  Another alternative to cotton is bamboo, but that is for another blog post!