Farmers in Colorado tend to about 6 hectares of hemp. Hemp can’t cause a “high.” Hemp, which is also known as hashish sativa, is a close cousin of hashish indica, known to many as marijuana. But hemp is much healthier and will not trigger any feeling of high. Unfortunately, hemp, which looks exactly like marijuana, has been tarnished because of this affiliation.
Hemp is a Useful Crop
Although hemp is an extremely useful crop that can be made into just about everything, such as paper, clothes, shoes, animal feed, and building insulation, the crop was banned in many countries in the 20th century.
President Nixon outlawed the crop in the US in 1970 and that has been the case ever since. However, in December of last year, the Federal Act of 2018 was passed into law. The Bill removed hemp from the list of dangerous substances. As a result, many are expecting that the US production of hemp will skyrocket and industry experts have backed up such claim.
Sales of Hemp in the US
In 2018, the sale of hemp products in the United States reached $1 billion. This was according to New Frontier Data, a research company specializing in reports about the different types of cannabis.
Imports make up most of the figure although the US Drug Enforcement Administration approved for some pilot programs to conduct research under the 2014 Farm Bill. New Frontier Data expects the sale of hemp products in the US to reach $2.6 billion by 2022. They have also predicted that the sales for the global hemp industry will reach $5.7 billion by 2020 from $3.7 billion in 2018.
Cannabidiol or CBD
The soaring demand for hemp has something to do with the cannabidiol or CBD. This compound can be obtained from the flowers of the hemp plant and is the main reason for its popularity.
The CBD can also be found in marijuana but the biggest difference is that it will not make the user high in hemp. In fact, the CBD in hemp is used in epidiolex, a medication used for the treatment of epilepsy. This drug is now being prescribed in both the United States and the National Health Service of the UK.
However, the sales of epidiolex have been affected by the growing popularity of consumer products that have CBD in them because of the belief that it’s capable of treating a wide range of health problems, including cancer, inflammation, anxiety, and pain. Meanwhile, the increase of sales of hemp is good news for the environment since this hardy plant is growing very fast and will only require a small amount of water. In fact, it requires far less irrigation than wheat, corn, and soybeans. Currently, China is the world’s biggest exporter of hemp although the US is slowly changing that.