Think of a plant that can be used to make almost anything on earth. Think about hemp tea, hemp paper, hemp straws and even cars made from hemp. Even the legendary Henry Ford used hemp in making a prototype car before it was rendered illegal. The benefits of hemp are many and so vast is its potential that if fully exploited one can’t fathom the revenues that would be generated.
Not to forget the positive effects that the plant will bring. Since its legalization in the U.S. in 2018, there has been a lot of debate on the benefits that a country can accrue by legalizing hemp. We will discuss some of the benefits of legalizing hemp.
Hemp industry will help grow the agriculture industry
Hemp farmers in the U.S. are looking into the future with renewed hope and optimism. The agricultural landscape in the U.S. has evolved over the years as a result of many factors. Most recently, climate change coupled with trade wars with China have seen the production of conventional crops take a back seat. Crops such as tobacco and soybeans are not doing well anymore. The dairy industry is also hit hard by climate change. Many farmers are currently shifting to hemp farming because of the many benefits it offers.
First and foremost, the demand for hemp is increasing daily which serves as an incentive for farmers to grow the crop. A Bloomberg report states that it is estimated that the CBD oil industry alone will be a $ 20 billion industry in the year 2020.
With the government’s goodwill, the smallholder farmers will get similar amenities such as insurance, access to low-interest loans and lift of traveling bans for the farmers so that they can transport their hemp to the processor for value addition which will surely increase their earnings. The crop is also frost and disease-resistant. Therefore, there is a higher probability of crop success with hemp than traditional crops. With all these benefits, the government can improve the earnings and lift the living standards of thousands who depend on agriculture for survival.
The health benefits of hemp
Cannabidiol or CBD has many health benefits for exploitation. This is an extract of the hemp plant that has THC levels of less than 1%. Therefore, it does not have the mind-altering effects of marijuana. It has many health benefits that can be applied to treat different ailments. The CBD oil has been found to be a great pain reliever for ailments such as cancer and degeneration of the nervous system. It is also a great option for epileptic patients especially children because of its great anti-seizure properties.
Anxiety disorder and chronic depression patients have reported relief after the use of CBD oil. Heart diseases are becoming rampant all over the world. Hemp can also help to reduce the cases of death as a result of heart diseases. It is also instrumental in the treatment of type 1 diabetes. Hemp derivatives also helps drug addicts such as tobacco addicts to stop their addiction.
Hemp is an environment-friendly plant
The plant provides many benefits to the environment it feels unreal. With our planet choking from pollution and in dire need of conservation, hemp is a welcome alternative to the conventional conservation efforts. With forest cover dwindling by the day, hemp can save four acres of trees if we shifted to hemp paper. And what’s more, hemp paper is more superior.
Growing hemp does not require a lot of spraying as in the case of other plants. Therefore, it saves our environment from pesticides and herbicides pollution. Hemp also helps in soil regeneration, improve soil fertility and prevents soil erosion. This is because it forms deep roots that hold the soil together. The leaves are also rich in nutrients and once they fall on the soil they provide essential nutrients required for the fertility of the soil.
Imagine how our planet chokes from non-biodegradable plastic with some taking 1000 years to decompose? Now imagine a simple solution as hemp which is not only biodegradable but also the greatest producer of cellulose which is a key ingredient in making plastics. It is also used to remove toxic metal from the soil.
Hemp is also a biodegradable source of fuel which can help save the planet the air pollution that has choked our planet. Our water sources are dwindling and our savior is hemp. Compared to a crop like cotton, hemp uses very little water to grow, therefore, saving a lot of water. Hemp is also a great crop for crop rotation, contributing to sustainable farming practices.
Hemp can help in fighting malnutrition
Countries in the world are grappling with famine and malnutrition which can be solved by growing hemp. Hemp seeds are rich in fatty acid in the name of linoleic acid (omega-6) and alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3). They are also rich in vitamin E, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, Sulphur, zinc, iron and calcium which are essentially for a healthy body. It is also a great source of plant protein and it has been found to have the same protein content as beef and lamb only that this is healthier than the two. Together with Quinoa, they are the only plants that have the full plant-based protein. This is because the plants lack amino acid lysine which hemp possesses. Hemp seeds are also rich in fiber which is great in aiding the digestion process.
Growth of different industries
Imagine that hemp can be used to make over 25,000 different products. The first industry that will be boosted by hemp legalization is obviously the hemp processing industry. Hemp will contribute to industries such as health, food, clothing, bio-fuels, automotive, plastic and composite materials, paper, jewelry, water purification, environmental conservation to name but a few. The truth is, hemp has the potential to contribute to each sector of the economy and the effects will be seen in improved standards of living, increased jobs, evolving and emerging of many industries which will ride on the hemp wave.
In conclusion, the benefits of legalizing hemp for any country are a lot. It will be a good idea if many leaders consider this golden plant that has the potential to change the lives of many people and also impact our lives and destinies in a major way.