Hemp has is known to have well over 50,000 uses. Some are well known, others not so much. One thing is for certain, hemp is the most useful plant in the world. In honor of National Hemp Week, here’s just a few of the numerous uses for this incredibly versatile plant.
1.Clothing and other textiles
Hemp was first used to make clothing by the Chinese back in 8,000 BCE. Hemp is best known for its durability as a fabric, so it is used to make clothing for strenuous activities such as sporting events. Hemp can also be used to make long lasting and reliable shoes. Actor and cannabis advocate Woody Harrelson, once wore a suit made from hemp to an awards show.
Though uncommon, hemp can also be used to make paper. Hemp paper only accounts for less than one percent of the world’s paper production. Hemp paper is more expensive to make, despite it being more recyclable than paper made from wood.
3. Nutritional Supplement
Surprisingly, hemp has a great deal of nutritional benefits because the hemp seed is high in protein, iron and contains beneficial amino acids. The seed is made into oil, which is often used to make foods and beverages.
Hemp can be used to make a cleaner and more efficient alternative to gasoline. Producing biofuel from discarded hemp will not only reduce dependence on foreign oil, but will also go far in reducing damages to the ozone causing climate change.
Hemp can be used to make biodegradable plastics, which will actually break down and go back into the ground when discarded, as opposed to standard plastic. Plastic made from hemp is also more recyclable than regular plastic.
Though this idea hasn’t actually come to fruition yet, researchers at the University of Alberta in Alberta, Canada are currently working on developing supercapacitors made from hemp, to eventually be used as cell phone batteries.
7. Building Materials
Hemp can also be used to make building materials such as wood, insulation, plastics as we already mentioned and even concrete. This is good news for people who live in poorer areas of the world that also might not be near many trees.
8. Feed for Livestock
Just as humans can eat foods containing hemp, so can animals. Feed made from hemp would be a much healthier alternative to the feeds used currently which contain corn and antibiotics. Corn is heavily subsidized by the government so, you might not see animal feed made from hemp any time soon.
9. Skin Care
Hemp oil is also high in Essential Fatty Acids, or EFAs, which are not only beneficial nutritionally, but also good for your skin. Hemp oil can be used to make many different kinds of lotions and soaps.
10. Paints and Varnishes
Hemp oil can also be used to make non-toxic paints and varnishes. These are not only safer to use, but also absorb into materials faster than normal paint, and tend to last longer.
Featured Image Source: WashingtonPost
This is not even close to all of the different uses for this amazing plant. What are your favorite uses for hemp? Let us know in the comments!