They say history is written in the sands of time. In the case of hemp, history can be written, eaten, worn and then some without ever so much as missing a good time! Grab a couple of friends, make a jug of homemade Hemp Smoothie and let the trivial pursuit begin:

 

Hemp through the ages:

  • 8000+ BCE First known existence- hemp rope found in pottery in Modern Day Taiwan
  • 2737 BCE Cannabis Sativa L. first used as medicinal health product by Emperor Shen Neng of China
  • 6000 BCE First used for food in China
  • 4000 BCE First used in textiles in Turkestan
  • 1631-1800’s Hemp was a legal form of tender for tax payments in various parts of the world
  • It was a crime in Virginia from 1763-1769 to refuse to grow industrial hemp
  • 1776 Betsy Ross made the First US Flag out of nothing less than you guess it, hemp cloth
  • In 1850 Kentucky produced 40,000 tons of hemp
  • Regulations and restrictions on the sale of cannabis sativa as a drug began as early as 1860
  • Until the 1880s most schoolbooks were made of hemp paper
  • 1937 Marihuana Tax Act – A United States Act that placed a tax on the sale of Cannabis Sativa L.. Originally this act was meant to serve as an Act to impose an occupational excise tax upon certain dealers in cannabis/marihuana (modern day slang “marijuana”), to impose a transfer tax upon certain dealings in marihuana, and to safeguard the revenue there from by registry and recording. What resulted was a significant decrease in the production of hemp for industrial purpose. Because the cousin of the Marijuana plant, industrial Cannabis Sativa L., fell under the same terms as the drug “Marihuana”, it was being taxed heavily and couldn’t compete with upcoming pulp and paper mills and the introduction of synthetic fibers in the industry.
  • In the late 1930s bird seed merchants successfully lobbied the US Congress to preserve the legality of hemp seeds
  • 1941 Henry Ford designed a car body that could absorb ten times as great as steel and run on hemp fuel. Hemp was illegal at the time in the US so the car never went into production.
  • Until the 1960s bird merchants were the only ones who could obtain viable hemp seed. The use of the marijuana strain of Cannabis Sativa L. for recreational use boomed and hemp plants became notable to blame. The US Congress figured they better do something quickly about regulating availability of seeds to grow all strains of hemp plant Cannabis Sativa L. – thus the sterilization process of hemp seeds began.
  • 1998 Canada legalizes growing Industrial Hemp Seed Cannabis Sativa L. and a once thriving agricultural sector is reborn and currently booming more then ever!
  • 2014 US finally repeals the laws set in place in the first half of the 21st century and legalizes growing and production of industrial hemp Cannabis Sativa L. in ten US states: California, Colorado, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia. More and more states are showing an interested in hemp.

history of hemp image 1

Did you know? Have you heard? Everyone loves good hemp gossip, pass it along!

  • US founding father Benjamin Franklin owned a mill that made hemp paper
  • The same blend of material used to make modern day hemp thread for jewellery was used as paper for the first two drafts of the First Amendment of the United States Constitution
  • The classic and beloved Alice in Wonderland was originally printed on hemp paper
  • Hemp seed oil works as a phthalate for softening plastic, allowing it to become more flexible – this is a much better alternative then the synthetic chemically derived agents mainly used today!
  • Thomas Jefferson smuggled hemp seeds out of China to bring to America
  • The word canvas is Latin for cannabis
  • Some of the most famous works of art were painted on hemp canvas and hemp paper
  • Van Gogh used hemp linen for many of his paintings including his famous self portraits
  • According to the testimony of Sherwin Williams Paint Co’s appeal against the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act, they used 58,000 tons of hemp seeds in 1935 for their paint products
  • During the plight to outlaw any form of marijuana (industrial hemp included), it was painted as being far more violent and deadlier than cocaine or opiates. It was unfairly spread that the hemp and marijuana industry resulted in insanity, violence and murderous rampages.
  • Hemp was outlawed under somewhat of a disguise; politicians and leading textile bosses lobbied the 1937 Act to use the originating Mexican term for hemp “Marihuana” in lieue of “Cannabis Sativa L.” so that the public would not recognize that it was actually industrial hemp they were taxing as well

Healthy Stuff:

  • Hemp seed oil packs in all essential fatty acids offering the perfect ratio of Omega 3 and 6 for our bodies
  • Calcium, potassium, magnesium, copper, folate and vitamins B6 and E are all found in hemp seeds
  • Hemp seed is technically a nut
  • Hemp has natural anti-inflammatory benefits
  • Hemp seeds can be used to make milk and butter
  • Hemp helps to prevent spikes in insulin/blood sugar, keeping glycemic levels down in the body – this helps regulate the metabolism and is what aids in long term weight loss
  • Hulled hemp seeds (also known as hemp hearts) contain over 30% protein concentration
  • Hemp seed foods are more allergen free than any other seed/nut foods
  • Hemp seed protein contains all 20 known amino acids including the 8 essential and 2 semi-essential amino acids our bodies cannot produce – making it one of the very best meat alternative sources

 

Let’s face it, hemp is one of the most versatile agricultural crops and would benefit any economy on both mirco and marco levels with its sustainable agricultural practice, multifaceted uses, health benefits and multi-industry job creation.