When you think of hemp, you might think of marijuana and getting high, or the current hype about the benefits of using CBD. But the plant has many uses beyond recreation. And it doesn’t make scratchy clothing either. There’s a lot more to the plant than may first meet the eye.
Hemp vs. Marijuana
In the United States, the term hemp legally refers to varieties of the cannabis family that have 0.3 percent or less THC based on dry weight. These plants are non-intoxicating and are harvested for industrial uses. The outer portion consists of the valuable bast fibers. The inner portion is known as the hurd, which has shorter strands in it. The interior part makes up as much as 80 percent of the stem.
On the other hand, marijuana has more than 0.3 percent THC by dry weight. It may have psychoactive effects on users. However, other people choose to use it for certain health conditions. For example, people may use medical marijuana in Missouri to treat debilitating or chronic medical conditions. Today, getting your medical marijuana card online is an easy process.
Uses of Hemp
The plant has been used for thousands of years as a fiber and has been grown on nearly every continent. But clothing isn’t the only thing it’s been used for. Sails, ropes, paper, and even housing material have also been made from it. The fabric made from the fiber has many benefits, which we’ll look at in a moment. The texture is similar to linen. Sometimes, it’s mixed with other fibers to create extremely soft, durable fabrics.
You might have heard the nickname weed for the cannabis plant, and this is no coincidence. The plant grows rapidly, choking out competing vegetation. Because of its ability to reduce pests and how prolific it is, farmers don’t need to use chemicals like herbicides or pesticides on it. It also grows rapidly. In general, it’s ready for harvesting about four months sooner than cotton. You might have heard that cannabis is a toxic drug, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. You’ll likely find fewer chemicals in this type of clothing than other types. It is dense enough that it does not need much land to grow. Compared to cotton, hemp requires little water. Once it is harvested, processing also uses significantly less water than cotton. To turn the fibers into material, they are harvested, broken down, separated, and spun.
You already know that cotton is a breathable fabric, but hemp is even more so. That increases its comfort and makes it fast drying. The more you wash it, the softer it gets because it doesn’t accumulate lint. The fibers are closely bonded together, even more so than other types of fabric. This makes the material strong and long lasting. That’s why so many people choose it for making ropes. Another benefit is that this type of clothing resists bacteria. It can protect your skin from bacteria, helping it support your immune system. The fibers are also resistant to UV rays from the sun and can reduce harmful tanning.