Benefits of hemp

Hemp was once widely grown in America. Heck, it was used all over the world, dating back to the Neolithic Age in China, for a multitude of products: paper, textiles, food, plastics, insulation, biofuel—the list is long. And then came reefer madness.

Two factors converged to discredit hemp. The story goes that William Randolf Hearst, the newspaper giant, set about defaming the prolific plant to make way for trees to provide paper. Money talks, right?

Around the same time, according to Martin A. Lee in his book “Smoke Signals,” Harry Jacob Anslinger became the director of the newly formed Federal Bureau of Narcotics (FBN) in Washington, D.C.

Money was tight and Anslinger needed a cause to save the failing FBN. Mexicans bringing in weed, smoking it and “becoming raging rapists, ax murderers, criminals, etc.” became the scapegoat. (Any of this sound familiar?)

So between the FBN and Hearst, reefer madness was touted all over America by yellow journalists. The rest, as they say, is history. Hemp, although a cousin of marijuana, was tarred with the same brush and banished from United States agriculture by 1958.

As it receded from our agriculture, so did the knowledge of its benefits. As a source of food, it is prolific and can survive without chemical pesticides mucking up the environment. (Did you know it even kills the weeds that try to grow around it?) From this food source comes hefty amounts of heart healthful Omega-3 and -6. Hemp seeds can be used to make butter, jazz up a salad with nutrition and flavor, and many other things. If you’ve read any of these blogs, you’ve learned about many health benefits derived from hemp, the source of CBD.

Losing hemp’s industrial potential has been an economic shame. According to an article in Forbes, hemp could be a boon for the economy and the environment. It’s versatile and can be used to produce textiles, paper, biofuel and more. In fact, the fiber is stronger than cotton, softer and lasts longer. It uses less water and grows almost anywhere. Fiberboard, lighter and stronger than wood, is another byproduct of hemp. Plus, trees take years to grow. Hemp not so much, so sustainability is not a problem. We’re missing out on a boatload of products that could be produced from this one plant more ecologically and economically effectively.

See, the thing about hemp is that it’s not marijuana, but that knowledge has been lost in the hype and fear raised by yellow journalism. Education and knowledge can still be power. Learning about and using CBD products could have a profound effect on our economy and environment, and you. Find out for yourself, and join the CBD-product revolution.