The Battle Between Hemp And Cotton: Which Is Best

Hemp Field
Hemp Field

Both industrial hemp and cotton have been around for a long time. Industrial hemp has cotton beat by about 3,000 years, with it’s first know use being about 10,000 years ago, on the Asian continent, around the Thailand area. Cotton’s first known use was about 7,000 years ago, on the North American continent, somewhere in the Mexican region.

Cotton Field
Cotton Field

 

I have no intentions on bashing cotton, as I find it to be a very useful fiber. But the question still remains, is hemp better than cotton? From the research that I have done, I found the answer to be yes, in my opinion.

Why the battle, why not just fair competition? Well, industrial hemp is a superior plant to cotton, so it is not really “fair” so to speak. While cotton has many great attributes, hemp’s attributes are far better in many areas, some are shown in the graph below.

Hemp Vs Cotton Graph
Hemp Vs Cotton Graph

Why There Hasn’t Been Competition Between Hemp and Cotton

Industrial hemp was grown in the United States as a major cash crop well before the introduction of cotton. Our first settlers were mandated to grow hemp for the Royal Crown. Then they began to use the hemp for US battleships, to fight for our independence from the Crown.

Until the late 1930’s, industrial hemp was “The Fiber of Our Lives”, it was still mandatory for farmers to grow hemp until the invention of the steam ship.

Between dirty politics, the introduction of synthetic fibers, wood mills (paper mills), and the big oil companies, the production of industrial hemp came to a halt in 1937.

By this time, cotton had already taken the lead in clothing manufacturing. This was due to cheap prices from the use of slave labor that gave cotton an unfair, and unrealistically cheap price. Being cheaper, cotton became very popular worldwide, and people really wanted the softer material that cotton provided at the time as well, cotton’s popularity didn’t end when slavery ended and drove the prices up.

The uses for industrial hemp for fabrics was limited to uniforms, furniture covers, sails, and ropes, etc… In the end, hemp got pushed out of the United States entirely, it was illegal to grow, so there were no more advancements made with hemp in the United States for many years.

Any hemp product has either been imported or the fibers were imported for the item to be made. Now, industrial hemp is making a fast and furious come back. The American public is being offered items that were unheard-of 20 years ago.

With the most recent vote for legalizing marijuana, which affects the legalities of growing industrial hemp as well, 30 states have approved for medical marijuana and 9 of those states approved for recreational as well.

This lifts the limitations of growing industrial hemp in those states, there will be no more need for importing hemp fibers, which should bring down the prices of hemp products really soon, at least I would think. And we can start making advancements on the fabrics and other products that can be made from the industrial hemp plant as well.

What does all of this mean for cotton, “The Fabric of Our Lives”? It just means that cotton has a renewed competitor. Cotton has a good strong reputation on our market, so it will not stop being grown and used, they just have to be ready for competition.

Some Common Uses For Industrial Hemp and Cotton

They both have multiple uses, industrial hemp exceeds cotton, having over 25,000 uses, to cotton’s nearly 100 (this is just a guess, I have found products other than clothing, but no product count), but you can still do more than just make clothes out of both of them nonetheless.

For safe human consumption, cotton seed oil has to be processed to remove the agent called, gossypol, that is poisonous to humans and other animals in large doses. Aside from that it is fairly healthy.

Hemp oil either from the seed or the flower can be consumed as is, after it’s extraction, with no alterations. It is perfectly safe straight from the plant.

They can both be used to make paper that is much better than paper made from wood pulp. In combination of paper production they could put the wood paper companies out of business. This would save so many trees every year!

It is safe to say that both of these plants can be used for more than they appear.

Growing and Harvesting Each

Industrial Hemp

Hemp can be grown in all 50 states if it was allowed. It adapts to the environment around it and thrives, so location is not an issue for becoming a hemp farmer.

You will not need to use pesticides with hemp as it does not attract many if any pest. This is good for the poor honey bee population that is depleting because of pesticides. And weeds don’t stand a chance in a hemp field, the hemp chokes them out and over powers them for sun by growing taller faster.

When growing hemp you do not really need a lot, just the farm land and some help from mother nature and maybe a little water if it doesn’t rain very much. Hemp grows like a weed literally, and matures fast.

Planting hemp is not tricky, it just depends on what the hemp is being grown for as to how you plant it. You plant it very close together for longer stalks and fewer leaves and stems to get more fiber material. If you are looking to get the flowers, you will plant them further apart, allowing for more branches to create more flowers.

There are harvesting machines that cut the hemp low to the ground and leave it lay to dry. This gives nutrients back to the dirt during the drying process when it is done in the field.

Cotton

The southern states are best for cotton, it likes a hot dry climate, but requires a larger amount of water to compensate. If the cotton is not organic, there are a number of pesticides used in its growth, as pest love the cotton plant.

Cotton plants are planted further apart as they require a little elbow room to grow and mature properly. You have to keep weeding a cotton field or the weeds and grass will steel the nutrients from the dirt, and your cotton harvest will suffer, yielding you less cotton.

It used to be that cotton was harvested by hand, but that has long since been replaced by machines. The picker or stripper, which is the harvesting machine, has spindles that pick and twist the cotton from the burrs. The plants must be removed at a later time.

Texture And Comfort of Each

While industrial hemp is known to be more coarse than cotton, over it’s years of absence in the United States, other countries have been utilizing hemp for some time and have created fabrics that feel quite luxurious.

Most fibers like cotton, use an acid wash to soften them for making clothing, but the acids were found to weaken hemp fibers, so it was not used on hemp. In the 1980’s, a new enzyme-based process was invented to soften the fibers of hemp. This made hemp more pleasurable to wear by itself and easier to blend with other fibers as well.

Blending hemp fibers with other natural and synthetic fibers has been experimented with successfully. You can find hemp blended with silk, cotton, and synthetic fabrics as well. This of course increases the comfort of the hemp and in turn increases the quality of the fiber it is mixed with.

After cotton goes through an acid wash it is soft enough to make fine linen, and comfortable apparel as well. Before being acid washed, it is almost as rough as hemp.

Fabric Attributes of Each

Hemp fabric is far more durable than cotton. This is because the length and thickness of fibers in comparison. Over a short time cotton will wear out and get holes in it, whereas, hemp over a long period of time just gets more and more comfortable.

Cotton is absorbent, but hemp is more absorbent, because hemp has a hollow fiber core. This also allows hemp fibers to dry faster than cotton. Also, it is why hemp is warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.

When grown organically, they are both hypoallergenic and have antibacterial properties. But, hemp also contains natural anti fungal properties that keep it from growing molds and mildews longer, and helps refrain from holding odors.

So Which One Is Best?

This is going to be one of those personal choices.

I, personally, think that hemp is a far superior fiber. It can be made softer and more comfortable to wear, either used by itself or combined with another fiber. The strength of hemp is unsurpassed by any other fiber known to man, and it’s life span is very lengthy. Or, it can be left all natural and be used for industrial uses, like ropes and canvas’ and such.

To me being so multifaceted makes hemp the superior plant to the cotton plant all together. I’m not say that cotton should stop being used, I am just saying that I think hemp is superior and should be used in more applications.

I would love to hear your opinion on this subject. Please feel free to leave a comment below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

As always, thank you for reading my article.

Stacie Fortson

Go Green With Hemp

Hemp And Alternative Packaging For The Holidays: Wrapping Paper Is Too Taxing On The Environment

Happy Holidays to all! May the season be bright and cheery for all!    Hemp Christmas Bulb

Gift giving and receiving gifts is the best part of the Holidays for sure!

What happens to all the pretty bows, ribbons, and wrapping paper at the end? If we recycle them, it shouldn’t be a problem right? That’s what we tell our selves anyhow.Christmas Gifts Under The Tree

The truth of the matter is that wrapping paper is not the best for recycling because of the heavy inks, glitters, and foils, etc… All the pretty decor on the paper makes a sludge that requires even more chemicals to process it, and most recyclers do not want to deal with it.

“I’ll just burn mine.” Is the next thought, well, think again, the inks and foils and such, also create carcinogens that are very harmful to our lungs! In other words, that’s a big NO! NO! I have to admit that for many years, I burned my wrapping paper, not knowing that I was putting my family at risk.

So then what can we do to lessen the blow to the environment and still have beautiful gifts to exchange? There are quite a few options out there actually.

Reusable Hemp Gift Bags

There are so many to choose from! I found some of the best prices on Amazon. They are my first stop for most items, as I find some of the best deals on Amazon.

Like these RUSPEPA Merry Christmas Gift Bag w/ Hemp Handle & Tags, it is a pack of 6 bags that vary in sizes selling for $11.99. These are ideal for almost any gift, and can be reused for years to come, simply put them away with your holiday decorations, and break them out every year.

For those little awkward items that are a pain to wrap, DierCosy 10Pcs Christmas Sack Gift Bag Linen Hemp Gift Bag, this is the perfect gift bag to use instead of wrapping paper. I find it quite handy that you can wash them as well if they get dirty, it makes for fresh gifting. For these 10 bags you will only pay $3.56, and it comes with free shipping as well.

For the medium to larger gifts you can use CleverDelights’ 10 packs of 12″ x 20″ Red Burlap Bags with Natural Jute Drawstring. With being priced at $22.99 for 10 bags, that is very affordable. These bags are a beautiful red, and will look stunning under your Tree!

These are some wonderful alternatives to wrapping paper. By using them we could cut down a great deal of waste during the holidays, and save some trees in the process.

Each year 4 million tons of shopping bags and wrapping paper overload our landfills. Buying a set or to of these bags could help ease a lot of the burden on the landfills during the holidays.

Gift Wrapping Made of Hemp And Other Recycled Materials

If you just have to have wrapped gifts under the tree there are some wonderful wrapping papers that are easier to recycle, and are very attractive as well. Here are a few that I found on Amazon while shopping around.

One choice of paper to help set the holiday mood is Kraft Classic Wrapping Paper Set. This gift wrapping paper is high quality, thick wrapping paper. This paper can be used for crafts, table coverings, and other creative ideas as well. Being multi functional and attractive, makes it well worth the purchase!

You get 6 rolls that are 30″ by 10′, for $19.99. And there is a variety of sets to choose from. The paper is not only easier on recyclers, but is made from recycled material as well.

Ankuka Kraft Christmas Wrapping Paper Set is similar in quality to the Kraft wrapping paper. It is thick and of high quality as well. Ankuka offers 5 rolls of paper for $18.99 each roll contains 30″ by 10′ of paper, so the rolls are the same size, you just get one less for a dollar less. I guess it depends on how much paper you feel you need.

Christmas Tree Kraft Paper Hanging Tags Xmas Present Gift Labels provides you with 200 tags with strings for $10.95. That is enough tags for at least two years, maybe three depending on how big your gifting circle is.

Tree Kraft paper is made with recycled materials and hemp, the stings are made of hemp fibers. There is a wonderful assortment for adding more diversity of holiday cheer under the tree.

Decorate Your Packages With Bows And Ribbons You Make

Ribbons and bows are not recyclable on an industrial outlook, but you can reuse those little buggers every year if you save them and apply a bit of tape. Aside from that throw them in the trash, because they clog up the recycling system.

There are several styles of hemp ribbons that you can make bows from and tie your packages closed with too. Amazon has a few that I found to be fitting and attractive for the holidays.

Holiday Burlap Ribbon Roll Jute Red Fish Silk Hemp Rope is one that will make some very beautiful bows, and will effectively tie a package closed. The price is $4.99 plus $3.98 for shipping and you get 32.8′ of ribbon. The ribbon can be reused just like the bags, all you have to do is put them away with your decorations each year.

If you find that ribbon is too thick or you want to add more flare to your packages as well, there are other ribbons to choose from. One product is Jillson Roberts 6 Spool, it is 1/4″ wide by 50′ and is available in 16 colors. You will pay $14.87, and if you are a Prime member, you will get free shipping on this item.

Buying these ribbons allows you to put a personal touch in the beautifying of your gifts. In turn, this makes the gift have more meaning to the recipient.

Our Gifts Can Still Look Beautiful With Recycled Materials

Gift Decorations

With the ever growing rate of consumers, we need to start being more mindful of our purchases, and this is all part of it. The holidays create a huge amount of waste for our landfills. And if not properly recycled, extra work on the recycling factories that have to sort out our mess.

Reusable gift bags are probably one of the best ways to give gifts in my opinion. Not only do you still get the pretty outside package, but you also have something to carry your gifts home in as well. And next year, you can reuse the same gift bags over. In the long run it saves money too.Christmas Gift Bag

The bags can be very pretty and made for any occasion, not just Christmas and Hanukkah. You can find them made from hemp cloth to hemp paper, and other recycled materials, and they are a perfect substitute for wrapping paper, and you can buy a combination of styles so your gifts do not all look the same under the tree.

I don’t think it’s too much to ask for us to use reusable gift bags and wrapping paper that is easier to recycle. Leaving less of an environmental footprint from the holidays couldn’t hurt.

Using less wrapping paper will definitely help, as most wrapping paper is made from trees.

I know a lot of people are wondering why I have not mentioned the purchasing of live tree versus fake trees. This is my opinion on that. The average Christmas tree comes from a lot and is farmed, much like vegetables, only trees.

It is not like we have our entire population out cutting their own trees, ravaging the forests every year. That is what the paper makers do daily, not the families enjoying their Christmas with a tree once a year.

Having a real tree or a fake one is a matter of choice in my opinion, and no one should be scrutinized for their choice. Be careful with either tree type, both can be fire hazards if not cared for properly, that is my only opinion on which Christmas tree is best.

If you are in need of alternative gift packaging this year, follow any of the product links above and take your pick. I found some really nice offers for some quality products.

Let me know what you think about the products I have found and my review. Feel free to leave a comment below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

As always, thank you for reading my review.

Stacie Fortson

Go Green With Hemp

Dash Hemp Santa Cruz: My Review of Their Hemp Made Clothes That Are Also Fashionable

Hemp At Sunrise

When you mention hemp fabric, most people think of coarse and rough textures like burlap and canvas or even rope. All of these items can be and have been made from Industrial Hemp Fibers, so it is understandable.

hemp burlap sacks                         Hemp rope

For many years it seemed that the softest fabric that could be made from hemp fiber was jeans or canvas, and Let’s face it, theses are not the softest of materials.

What would you say if I told you that you can get hemp clothes that are soft and comfortable? Well brace yourself, it is very true! With the innovation and determination of some clothing manufacturers, we now have softer more luxurious items being made from Industrial Hemp fibers.

I am glad that times are changing, Industrial Hemp might just be the perfect material to make clothes from. It has the best air flow and absorption rate than most other fibers, this is due to hemp’s fiber having a hollow core. Not to mention that it is one of the strongest fibers known to man. It doesn’t wear out over time, it breaks in more instead.


Qualities of the Hemp Fiber

 

Hemp Fabric Qualities

 

Transfer Qualities

Hemp transfers and absorbs moisture better than most other fibers.

 

Anti- UV Properties (Via: Dash Hemp Santa Cruz)


 

I have discovered this Hemp clothing manufacturing company, called Dash Hemp Santa Cruz, out of Santa Cruz, California. You can buy clothes for men and women on their site, and they have a line of 100% Hemp bed sheets as well.

Dash Hemp Santa Cruz

Dash Hemp Santa Cruz has been making clothes for 21 years now, since 1997, and they have some very nice apparel. The hemp clothing company was founded by Richard Dash in 1997 after he attended a WHEE Festival in Oregon. He decided then, that hemp was the absolute best fiber for clothing.

If you’re looking for a unique fashion with the best quality fabric you can find, then look no further, Dash Hemp Santa Cruz is your clothing shop.

Comfort, value, and style & innovation are the three main goals of Dash Hemp. Creating a line of quality upscale hemp clothing is not easy.

COMFORT- When you first put on Dash Hemp clothes, you know you made the right choice. They are comfortable and do not cause any kind of itchy reactions. When it is warm, they keep you cool feeling and wick away moisture to keep you dry as well. And then, when it is cool, they keep you warm.

VALUE- The clothes last for a very long time, it is not uncommon to hear someone say they have been wearing a Dash Hemp T-shirt or Jeans for years, they just last and last. They don’t pill (get the fuzz balls from the fiber strands coming out of the fabric) and don’t stretch out after years of wearing, or shrink up after washing and drying.

STYLE & INNOVATION- With offering hemp fabrics that are soft and comfortable straight from the manufacturer, that alone shows the innovation this company has to offer. Then to match the comfort with style that can be either casual or semi formal as well, that just makes them top of the line in the Hemp Fabric Manufacturers.

Dash Hemp challenges you to search away for a clothing company that even compares to theirs, how they do what they do and what they do. In their words, “Surf away. You will emphatically not find any other company in America that does what we donothing close in terms of detailing fabrications and our unique looks. Our clothing is transformational.”

Dash Hemp has a wonderful customer service department, very helpful and friendly! They have a 21-day return policy, and 100% refund policy if you are not satisfied with your purchase.


Hemp Made Womens Clothing You Must Have

When you want to look stylish and be comfortable at the same time, Dash Hemp offers just that with their line of hoodies and long sleeve T-shirts.

These two items are a blend of 55% industrial hemp and 45% organic cotton, and they have stylish comfort written all over them! Being built to last, you will be able to enjoy them for years to come as well.

You have different colors to choose from for each style, and they come in sizes X-Small to X-Large. Their prices are very good for quality clothing. The woman’s long sleeve T-shirt is priced at $44, and the hoodies are $89.

 

woman's hemp hoodie                                        woman's over-sized long sleeve T-shirt

 

When you visit Dash Hemp’s website, you will see there a quite a few items to choose from to expand your wardrobe with.


Dash Hemp’s Line of Mens Clothing

Fashion for men is a little more simple or basic, than for women, I guess you could say. Let’s face it, for the most part guys want easy shopping and more simple styles. Comfort and style are still important, and that is exactly what Richard Dash knows, being a “guy”.

You will find at least one “must have” item for sure in this line of men’s clothing. All the items are durable, comfortable, and attractive. And the prices are great as well!

T-shirts range from $25 for the basic white Rocky’s hemp T-shirt, to $49 for a long sleeved T-shirt (not shown). With two brands of blue jeans to choose from, both priced at $99, and either would look great with the Camp Shirt selling for $79.

Rocky's Hemp T-Shirt              Nuccio 5 Pocket Hemp Jeans         Hemp Camp Shirt

Head on over to Dash Hemp’s website and see more men’s fashions! Just follow the link above, you’re sure to find either something for yourself or a great gift!


100% Hemp Bedding

Sheet sets too!

All natural colors, no dyes or perfumes or anything! They are perfect for those who suffer from allergies as they are naturally hypoallergenic.

100% Hemp Pillow Case                        100% Hemp Sheet Set With 2 Pillow Cases

Also, great for those with night sweats, as they naturally wick moisture from your skin to help keep you dryer. And being naturally antibacterial and anti fungal, also helps with the night sweats. These sheets will not hold odors, or grow any unwanted molds or mildews.


Hemp Clothes Can Be Made Fashionable and Comfortable

Hemp Men's Button Down            Woman's Hemp Ming Vest           Men's Hemp Leaf Print T-Shirt

Not all hemp clothes look like burlap or canvas, this we have definitely learned.

Dash Hemp Santa Cruz set out to prove this in 1997, and has taken the lead on hemp manufactured clothing. Don’t take just my word for this, click a link to their site and see what their customers have to say.

You will find a bunch of 5 star ratings, and very happy customers.

I would love to hear what you think about Dash Hemp Santa Cruz’s clothing for men and women. Please feel free to leave a comment below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

As always, thank you for reading my review.

Stacie Fortson

Go Green With Hemp

 

 

 

 

Hemp In Nepal-The Hemp Manufacture: Hemp Kurtha

Cannabis Leaf on Hemp Material Background

Hemp fibers are some of the strongest fibers known to man. There are many items that can be made from the fibers of hemp, from rope and twine, to shirts and underwear.

When these fibers are used for fabrics, the material lasts substantially longer than that made of cotton or other synthetic fabrics. Instead of wearing out and getting holes, they just break-in more and become more comfortable.

So that favorite pair of jeans, that always ends up with a hole in the worst area, would be a thing of the past. Your favorite jeans would just become more and more comfortable for much longer. Thus, saving you money in the long run.

Hemp fabric has the natural ability to wick moisture from the skin, making this ideal for making clothing items. There is also the bonus of the material being natural anti-fungal and anti-bacterial, which means no moldy mildew build-up, and no orders either.

It kind of makes you wonder why hemp is not already in our clothes that we buy every day, not even combined with cotton.

A Little About Hemp In Nepal-The Hemp Manufacture

For years Hemp In Nepal’s goods were only offered in Nepal, if you did not visit there, you did not get any of their hemp goods. With recent trade changes, they have begun to expand their sales to the world offering an array of quality hemp products. Their products include:

  • Hemp Bags
  • Hemp Clothes
  • Hemp Laptop BagsCompany Logo 'Hemp In Nepal'
  • Hemp Hats
  • Hemp Twine
  • Hemp Belts
  • Hemp Jewelry
  • Hemp Slippers
  • Other Hemp Accessories

This company makes some of the timeless classic hemp clothes, and accessories that you would expect to see, and in a large variety. All the items are hand made and of high quality! The items offered range in styles that are casual or formal and are eco-friendly.

Hemp In Nepal-The Hemp Manufacture is a privately owned manufacturer, exporter, wholesaler, and retailer. The hemp they use is grown in the Himalayan regions of the Nepal, all other materials are sourced from Nepal as well. This is to help support their local economy. That is their mission even. (This article is aimed at retailers, take note of the quantity limit of each item.)

The customer service is nice, they help in any way, and if you need to return your item it is simple, you just fill out the return information and print your shipping label and mail your package back. You can contact them as well if needed. In all they are a very pleasant company to deal with.

Hemp Kurtha

What is a Kurtha you ask? Well it is a long sleeve shirt, it can be a button-up or pull-over that buttons at the top. We normally call them dress shirts (button-ups) and long sleeve T-shirts.

The Hemp Kurtha is the most popular worldwide for the ease of transition from formal to casual. They are made from the finest quality hemp grown in the Himalayan regions of Nepal, and they sell for $18 per shirt if you buy a quantity of 20 or more.

Hemp Kurtha Hemp Button-Up

These shirts, in the button-up style, can be worn as dress shirts, tucked in with a suit jacket and tie, or casual wear, untucked and loosely buttoned. The pull-over can be tucked in with slacks and pass as formal, or can be worn untucked and unbuttoned and be totally casual.

If you want to offer a classy shirt in your store for a decent price this is the item for you to order now!

There are many items to display in your store for very reasonable prices. You can easily mark them up to make a profit and still have them affordable. That’s one important thing I noticed about Hemp In Nepal-The Hemp Manufacture’s wholesale prices.

Comfort and Style That Is Affordable

The Hemp Kurtha offers comfort and style that is for sure! They are lightweight and breathable shirts, being made from hemp gives them an unmatchable quality and durability as well.

As stated above hemp fabric has the natural ability to wick moisture from the skin, is naturally anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. Hemp is the perfect fiber to make clothing from.

If you own your own store or boutique, the price is very affordable to buy bulk and resell, and you will feel good about the product you are offering. Follow my link, place an order, and proudly display one of the finest Kurtha’s made.

I would love to know what you think about the Hemp Kurtha. Please feel free to leave a comment below, I will get back to you as soon as possible.

As always, thank you for reading my article.

Stacie Fortson

Go Green With Hemp

 

 

 

 

 

Hemp’s Memory Lane: The Good Times and The Bad Times

Industrial Hemp Plant
Hemp Plant

Industrial hemp is not a new thing at all, this plant has a lot of history, dating back about 10,000 years. It may very well be the first plant grown and processed for textile fiber. This plant was adorned by many royals, and was used by all! Processing hemp is one of mankinds oldest forms of industry.

With agriculture not being “normal”, meaning that it was invented by mankind, and being a direct link to the start of civilization; in 1977 Carl Sagan proposed the idea that marijuana being one of the first agricultural crops, could very well be linked with the development of civilization.

Humans have been around for about 250,000 years, but agriculture is only around 10,000 years old. It is hard to believe we went that long without civilization! And to think that hemp/marijuana could be the start is really interesting, and quite astounding as to why or how it was ever considered a bad thing?

It was used for everything from food and medicine to ropes, sails, and paper. There was nothing this plant couldn’t be used for, and it quickly became a valuable trade commodity, as it was introduced worldwide.

To see a wonderful resource like that just die off, is a total shame. It makes you wonder, what happened? How could this plant possibly suffer such a downfall after being used so reliably for so many years.

China’s Real Ancient Secret

The very first use of hemp can be traced back to an ancient Stone Age Village in Taiwan, off the coast of China. A lot of evidence supports it’s use, it was referred to as ma. Being able to decipher the ancient findings tells us that ma was used for food, medicine, hemp products, and believe it or not, to get high.

Don’t think they were just a bunch of stoners that couldn’t function though, it was actually frowned upon to just get “high”, it had to be your medicine, or have a spiritual purpose to be approved of.

China was one of the only countries using hemp for bow strings. Everyone else was using bamboo which didn’t compare to the trajectory and accuracy of the arrows shot with hemp made string. Thus giving a clear advantage above the enemy.

Made from Industrial Hemp
Hemp Twine

While the emperor’s’s wore the expensive silk, the citizens required a more affordable and durable cloth. Hemp was the main fabric until around 1200 A.D., when cotton was introduced.

Also, in about 150 BC, the first paper made 100% from shredded hemp cloth and mulberry bark was made in China. Some of the oldest documents in existence come from a Buhdist Temple in China and are on handmade hemp paper.

Emperor Shen Nung, who was revered as the “Father of Chinese Medicine”, recommended using it for over 100 illnesses.

The seeds were used for food, while it was not a “mainstay”, like rice and mullet, the seeds were used like any other grain for years. Oils were also produced from the seeds to be used in cooking and other products as well.

Seeds From Industrial Hemp
Hemp Seeds

China’s history with hemp is definitely the oldest in history!

Russia

Russia adapted to growing hemp very well since it’s introduction to the plant from China in the middle ages, finding an actual date has been rough! Nonetheless, it became a major cash crop for Russia.

Made from Industrial Hemp grown in Russia
Russian Hemp Products

Russia was the top producer of hemp since the 18 century, in the mid 1700’s they produced about 80% of Europe’s sails, ropes, nets, and other hemp-made equipment and supplies need for the ships, British shipping was almost totally reliant upon Russian Hemp, which cause Napoleon to start a hemp war.

He signed a Peace Treaty of Tilsit in 1807, with Tsar Alexander I, with the condition that there would be no trade with Great Britain, of whom Napoleon despised! France was hoping to cripple Great Britain with this treaty, but in the long run all failed and 4 years later Russia was trading with Great Britain again.

UK

The history of hemp in the UK is almost as extensive as that of China, who introduced the UK to hemp. Cambri Formosa – a Celtic princess, who taught women how to weave and sew, is said to be the first mention of hemp in the UK, this was around 373 BC.

From the 16th century to the 19th century hemp flourished in the UK, due to its versatility of use. It was needed for outfitting ships with sails, ropes, nets, and more, and it was a very valuable trade commodity. The huge demand for hemp and the products made from it, created a boosted many coastal economies, and employed thousands!

Industrial Hemp product
Hemp Ropes on a Ship

This plant was grown in every single country in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, showing just how popular and in demand it was!

The huge demand for this crop eventually lead Henry VIII to enforce farmers to grow hemp. For every 60 acres of cultivated fields, a quarter was mandated to be hemp. It was in such demand that Britain’s American Colonies were mandated to grow hemp for the crown as well, which was later used against Great Britain.

As shipping costs declined the UK found it was cheap to buy hemp. Russia at the time had come up with better ways to harvest and process the plant, and provided it at a very affordable price, and the UK bought it. The Queen knew that even if the trade fell through, she could rely on her own farmers to keep up with the demand.

Eventually with new inventions, came new demands. There was less and less of a demand for hemp. With the growth of the cotton industry hemp took a major hit, as people wanted the softer feeling fabric that cotton provided. And cotton was easier and faster to process.

America made the price of cotton deceptively very cheap, using slaves to tend the fields. This was giving a cotton a head start on the competition with hemp, with cotton being so cheap, and people preferring the texture hemp was losing the battle. When slavery was abolished, cotton had already become known and preferred for everyday fabrics.

Hemp took the back seat with being used for uniforms, camping and military gear, and other such uses. But then was outlawed in 1928 when the war on drugs campaign began.

It wasn’t until 1993 that the UK legalized the growth and production of hemp.

North America

Brought to the British Colonies in the early 1600’s, with the intentions of supplying the royal crown with the hemp grown. It was even mandatory to grow hemp, and you could use it to pay your taxes with. The nation’s founder’s were all growing and cultivating hemp as well.

Rumor has it, the first flags on our naval ships were made of hemp fabric, as no other fabric was strong enough to with stand the salty air the ships endured. The original drafts of The Declaration of Independence and The Constitution of the United States were both drafted on hemp paper, later to be copied onto other paper.

Drafted on Hemp Paper
Constitution of The United States

Hemp was a staple crop for the United States, not only did we use every part of the plant for some purpose, we sold and traded it to other nations.

This all came to an abrupt end with anti-marijuana campaigns that lumped hemp right in with marijuana. This rendered both pants illegal pretty much worldwide. Hemp had some major competitors in the US market. Oil companies, cotton farmers, and paper mills, were the major ones.

A “smear campaign” swept the world, not just the United States. This campaign lumped hemp in with marijuana, the form of cannabis that gets you high, and falsely scared people from even wanting grow it.

There were films that said things like, it would make you psychotic and would be the end of civilization. These lies scared many people, and cotton had already taken hold of the American fiber economy so it was easy to push it the rest of the way out of the picture with a few “stories”.

Created for the smear campaign of marijuana and hemp
Anti-Marijuana Symbol

The big oil companies and paper mills wanted to see hemp’s demise as it was now, their biggest competitor. Making it illegal was perfect for them, it did not matter that what they were saying was not true of hemp or marijuana for that fact.

The attempted revival of hemp during WWII ended as quickly as the campaign began. The U.S. government put out movies and fliers trying to get farmers to agree to grow hemp for the war. A lot of farmers agreed and signed contracts and all. This all ended when the war came to an unexpected end and left farmers with broken contracts and empty pockets.

The newest craze for CBD Oils, has pushed a lot of people in the right direction of legalizing hemp and marijuana. Hemp is now legal on the federal level in all 50 states, but not every state agrees with the farming and cultivation of hemp yet.

You can legally purchase and use Hemp CBD Oil in all 50 states, marijuana is a different story! Each state has it’s own laws, and it is still not federally legal.

People have again, begun to realize what hemp can do for our society, and that it is not dangerous or threatening in any way. It could actually help a lot of our current environmental issues fairly quickly.

Conclusion

Industrial hemp’s heritage has been linked as far back as the beginning of civilization, and possibly accredited for it as well, according to Carl Sagan.

For this plant to have such a rich history at one point, it saddens me to see how few people even know what it looks like, or any of it’s potential uses. It was intended for us to be using it in our everyday lives, God put these plants here for a reason!

Talk about a renewable resource! Hemp is the fastest growing renewable resource we have at our disposal, and yet, we do nothing with it, compared to what we should do with it, which is everything possible.

Cotton may produce the shorter softer fibers that everyone loves, but at what cost to our environment? Growing cotton requires the use of pesticides, 50% of the pesticides used in the U.S. to be exact.

We are loosing honey bees at an alarming rate
Honey Bee

This is a huge issue as we are loosing honey bees at an alarming rate due to pesticides. Hemp requires no use of pesticides as it grows so fast, and does not attract pests. But it does attract honey bees!

It is a huge part of the “Circle of Life” and should be recognized for all the good it can do.

I would love to hear your opinion on this topic. Please feel free to leave a comment below, and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

As always, thank you.

Stacie Fortson

Go Green With Hemp