- Hemp is an ideal material for making paper. It regenerates in the field in months (unlike trees which can take 30 years or more to become harvestable after planting.)
- It makes a fine quality paper that is naturally acid free and does not become yellow and brittle or disintegrate over time like conventional paper.
- Hemp is excellent for making rugs and other textiles. Levi Strauss’ original denim jeans were made of hemp.
- Hemp is the traditional fiber used in making ropes, due to its flexibility, strength, and resistance to water damage.
- Hemp oil can be used to create biofuels to replace fuel for diesel engines. Unlike fossil fuels, biofuels are renewable and produce less of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide. Rudolf Diesel built his original engine to run on hemp oil.
- Alternatives to plastic can be made from hemp. Hemp based materials can replace wood and other materials used to build homes and other structures including foundations, walls, shingles, paneling, pipes, and paint.
Maybe George Washington was correct when he said, “Make the most you can of the Indian Hemp seed and sow it everywhere.” (1794) Thomas Jefferson also opined, “Hemp is of first necessity to the wealth and protection of the country.” The draft of the Declaration of Independence was made on hemp paper, and the first American flag was made of hemp.
In short, hemp may look like marijuana, however it contains virtually none of the active chemicals that cause mind-altering effects. Politics and lobbying have kept this gift from us.