For centuries, hemp has been used by dozens of different civilizations to produce fabrics and other goods. It has a fibrous material which can be transformed into a variety of different products. It also has cannabinoids which can be used to make oils and other powerful supplements. The best part is that hemp poses a much more sustainable alternative to cotton and other traditional crops.
By implementing sustainable hemp farming through precision farming techniques, Cedar Valley is working to secure a better future for generations of farmers to come. Here are just a few ways that hemp’s versatility can be harnessed to create a more sustainable future for agribusiness:
Hemp as paper
Hemp won’t just save trees, but paper made from hemp is stronger and more durable. The hemp plant, like cotton, produces cellulose fibers that are much purer than fibers derived from wood. Many of the early documents printed on hemp paper hundreds, or even one thousand years ago, are still in existence…including the original Declaration of Independence.
Hemp as a fuel
Hemp is more sustainable and burns cleaner than any other fuel. More importantly, the same high cellulose level that makes hemp ideal for paper also makes it perfect for ethanol fuel production. Ethanol is the cleanest-burning liquid bio-alternative to gasoline. In one test, an unleaded gasoline automobile engine produced a thick, black carbon residue in its exhaust, while the tailpipe of a modified ethanol engine tested for the same 3,500 miles remained pristine and residue-free. Also, when hemp as a biodiesel combusts it releases water vapor and CO2 which is absorbed by plants.
Hemp to renew soil
When plants grow, most deplete the soil of some natural vital nutrients. Hemp revitalizes the soil it grows in, both by aerating the soil and through the deposit of carbon dioxide into it. This makes hemp ideal for crop rotation, and the crop that follows in the soil hemp grew in will develop better than if hemp had not been used.
Hemp as a fiber
Hemp is one of the strongest plant fibers. The venerable fiber is extremely resistant and rugged and has been used by sailors to hold ships and sails. In fact, Betsy Ross sewed the first American flag from hemp. It can produce 250% more fiber than cotton and 600% more fiber than flax using the same amount of land.
Hemp as food and care
Hemp seeds can be eaten or used as edible oil and provide an incredible source for protein. It can also be grown where other plants won’t because it is so durable. The oil can also be used for hair and skin care and detergent.
At Cedar Valley, we are devoted to developing technological advancements in hemp farming that will position this ancient crop at the forefront of modern, sustainable farming…where it belongs.