Hemp, the non-intoxicating plant often confused with marijuana, has a long history beginning as early as 8000 BC. Now, it's regaining interest for its tens of thousands of uses, and we're taking a look at what history can tell us about its future.
Hemp in Ancient Cultures
Hemp has been around for thousands of years, as far back as the Neolithic age. Our first known evidence of hemp was found in China, where archaeologists discovered pottery made with hemp cord.
Asia is not the only continent with evidence of the early use of hemp. Hemp is mentioned as a "sacred grass" and "King of Seeds" in ancient Hindu and Persian texts. Civilizations all over the world have left documentation of its significance.
The Middle Ages and Beyond
More recently, hemp spread throughout Europe in the middle ages. It was most likely native to the western hemisphere long before Europeans brought it over. However, Spain was the first to officially farm it when the plant was brought to Chile in the mid-1500s.
North America started its stormy relationship with hemp soon after, in the 1600s. Hemp was so widely used that colonists were required by law to grow hemp - or pay a fine. The first drafts of the Declaration of Independence were even written on hemp paper. So why isn't hemp a million-dollar crop now?
Hemp in the U.S.
Hemp's downfall began with the media. In the 1930s, wealthy people with control over the press - and interest in growing other crops - used their power to portray the crop as evil.
Then, the War on Drugs of the 1970s stuck hemp's landing as a universally misunderstood plant. The crop was lumped in with marijuana, its intoxicating cousin, and farming of the crop was made illegal. But that demonization didn't last forever.
The 2014 and 2018 Farm Bills recognized the potential of hemp as an environmentally-friendly crop with over 25,000 uses. The bills removed it from the Controlled Substances Act, making it legal to grow, process, and sell.
Hemp in the 2020s
State-to-state, the laws on hemp products are different, but it is federally legal. And now, with this new legality, we're able to utilize hemp for all of its applications and potential benefits.
We see hemp used to make fabric, clothing, and fiber. Some shoes are even made with hemp. It provides an alternative to plastics, paper, and fiberglass insulation. Hemp can even be used to produce a concrete substitute.
The plant also gives us food rich in nutrients, from seeds that can be eaten raw to hemp seed milk and oil. It's even utilized in products made using hemp oil that offer possible health benefits.
Additionally, CBD, a compound celebrated for its potentially beneficial properties, is made from hemp plants' flowers and stems. Products come as tinctures, topicals, ingestible items, and even beverage enhancers, like the ones we offer at Science-Rite.
It's impossible to know where hemp will take us next, but now that we are again utilizing the plant, we can see all of its possibilities.
At Science-Rite, we believe in the value of the aerial parts of the hemp plant. Learn more about how we utilize this incredible crop in our products, how you can benefit from hemp products, and our dream for its future.
You can also check out our collection of CBD products made using organic, USA-grown HEMP and Nanotechnology for higher bioavailability and absorption. Find NANO CBD products like our Water-Soluble CBD Gummies and Softgels, all designed with Nanotechnology for Ultra-Fast-Acting Extreme-Bioavailability.