Another step in the revival of hemp

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Hemp is legalized in the US
By Jerry Brownstein
Hemp is a species of the cannabis plant that has been valued since ancient times for its fibres and seeds, but it has been illegal to grow it in the US for many decades. That all changed in late 2018 with the passage of a law that included the legalization of hemp production. This paves the way for a resurgence of this versatile plant, overturning a strange history of confusion and ignorance that led to making hemp illegal in the US. Legislative hysteria over the use of recreational drugs in the 1960’s led to the ill-advised Controlled Substances Act of 1970. Hemp and marijuana were grouped together as Schedule One substances, meaning they were “drugs with high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use." This was irrational even for marijuana, but for hemp it was completely ridiculous.

While both marijuana and hemp are forms of the cannabis plant, hemp has very little THC, which is the substance that produces the "high" associated with marijuana use. Marijuana is typically used for recreational purposes, but it also has some medicinal value. Hemp, on the other hand, is completely different as it has no recreational use but has a wide range of positive applications ranging from food and medicine to clothing, construction and body care.

Hemp is sometimes described as a miracle crop because it is very easy to grow, has a short growing cycle, uses little water and is beneficial for the soil as it doesn't require the use of pesticides. You can't get high from hemp, but it is an abundant source of cannabidiol (CBD) which is proving to have a wide array of promising medical uses. Hemp seeds are a healthy food choice that contains protein and all nine essential amino acids. They are also an excellent source of plant-based omega-3 oil, and when eaten with the hulls they are rich in fibre.

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