One of the challenges that CBD producers have to deal with is the increasing organic waste. This has also led to some tough environmental questions such as how the packaging can be made recyclable, how to reduce electricity and water consumption, and in some cases, how to dispose of the harmful chemicals used in processing some of the hemp products.
Organic Wastes from CBD Production
The production of CBD products could result in the production of different wastes. Among these are the root balls, stems, exhausted growing medium, diseased plants, unmarketable leaves, seeds, or buds etc. Across the United States, the organic waste output of CBD production is estimated to be several million pounds each year. Sure, this is just a small amount compared to the waste produced by agriculture, food, and other industries. However, the plant’s unique combinations and qualities, not to mention the restrictions imposed by the government, have made handling the wastes so much more complicated.
The requirements of hemp disposal vary from one state to another, and there are even local jurisdictions that certain states impose. Most of these laws apply to bigger, licensed growers.
Recycling Hemp Waste into Useful Products
9Fiber, an agricultural technology company based in Maryland, is focused on recycling hemp waste, specifically the stalks and stems. The company collects a lot of hemp bio-waste that has been used in producing a wide variety of CBD products. They decontaminate the bio-waste, by separating the THC, which is an illegal component of the plant. Afterward, the fiber will go through a final process before it turns into something useful that includes fiberglass, bio-plastics, hempcrete, fuel, textiles, and more.
In November, the company was awarded a $250,000 grant and this new funding was used to expand the company’s operations. Hopefully, the grant can also help the company scale given the inevitable boom of the hemp industry.
Turning Waste into Prosthetic Limbs
In Canada, another company uses plastic waste gathered from marijuana shops to produce prosthetic limbs. After the country decided to legalize cannabis use, there has been a significant increase in plastic waste. The company, Kindness 3D, has decided to turn this waste into prosthetic limbs.
The non-profit company has been able to help people from all over the world, such as providing hands to a girl from Costa Rica and another in Brazil. They aim to not only recycle the plastic waste but also to help handicaps that are unable to pay for their prosthetic limbs.
Greener Future through Hemp Recycling
As the legalization of cannabis continues to spread all over the world, not to mention the increasing growth of the cannabis industry, companies such as the 9Fiber and Kindness 3D can play an important role in the environment. Their contributions to the industry are a vital role in lowering hemp waste while increasing the utility of the plant. Hopefully, recycling hemp waste can become a commonplace and reusing biomass products will become an important part of our daily lives.