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  • Why the historical background of hemp should be considered

    Why the historical background of hemp should be considered

    Although the effects of the hemp plant are diverse, these are now primarily associated with the intoxicant cannabis. However, the hemp plant offers not only the basis of the intoxicant, but also a wide range of different functions. The use of this crop therefore also occurs in the field of pain therapy, the textile industry or food production.

    In order to be able to better classify today's use of the hemp plant, it is worth taking a look at the history of hemp. For this reason, we would like to address today's article on the background and applications of this plant.
    The historical use of hemp
    Due to its long history, hemp is considered one of the oldest crops cultivated and processed by humans to this day. For example, the different components of the hemp plant have been considered as sustainable raw materials for about 7 millennia. Especially in Europe and Asia, hemp was valued early on. For this reason, the initial distribution of hemp cultivation has been very limited to these regions. The following historical episodes also explain the different uses that hemp has experienced throughout history.
    5000 BC Until 1500 BC Chr.
    Already 5000 years BC The components of hemp were used as a painkiller and as a weapon. The leaves of the hemp plant were used, among other things in the pain relief of wounded warriors in China. In addition, people in China also discovered the possible regulation of pain in malaria, rheumatism or joint pain. Thus, it becomes clear that the pain relief by the hemp plant has a long tradition that continues to this day.
    Due to the robust properties of the hempsehnhne the plant could also be used for the production of weapons, such as the bow. This methodology allowed for one of the most effective and resilient weapons before ancient times.
    Even in ancient times, the hemp plant could find a high recognition. Thus, in the Roman Empire, the plant was not only considered a valuable remedy and food, because it was also used for textile production. In this period, the diverse functions and properties of hemp were further explored. For example, the water repellency of hemp fiber has been found to be particularly useful for the sustainable production of textiles.
    middle Ages
    The hemp was used in the Middle Ages especially as a healing and painkiller. According to historical writings by Hildegard von Bingen (1000 AD), the hemp plant was used as a medicine against numerous physical complaints. Wound and stomach pains as well as abdominal cramps could thus be alleviated by the application of hemp.
    In addition, the hemp was also used in shipping to produce resistant sails and ropes. So the famous discovery trip of Christopher Columbus was also carried out with a ship made of hemp sails. For a long time, hemp was considered one of the most important raw materials for paper production. Well-known works, such as the Mona Lisa or the first constitution of the United States, for example, consist of hemp paper.
    Modern times & present
    The industrial production of textiles, food or paper has radically changed the original use of the hemp plant. Processing hemp was considered inefficient during industrialization and was therefore severely curtailed. The production of synthetic drugs has limited the use of hemp as a painkiller at times. Today, hemp is used in particular as cannabidiol (CBD) oil to relieve numerous types of pain.
    As an intoxicant Hanf was in the 60 years primarily as a "protest drug" against a conservative and bourgeois lifestyle. Although this form of cannabis can also be used medicinally, it is still banned in many parts of the world.
    What applications can be covered by hemp?
    The wide range of uses of hemp explains, among other things, the historical popularity of the plant. There is no ingredient that can not be recycled. In this sense, each component of the plant can be processed and used differently. In the following, we therefore go on to further understand the individual parts and the respective uses.
    Seeds: From the seeds of the hemp plant numerous foods, cosmetics, biofuels and animal feed can be produced. In the field of food production, especially the richness of healthy fatty acids and proteins of hemp seeds can be
    Stems: Even the stem of the hemp plant can be recycled easily. Thus, the sturdy characteristics of the stalk can be used for animal litter, ropes and building materials.
    Fibers: Due to their strength and longevity, the fibers of the plant are excellently suited for producing high-quality insulating materials, papers or textiles.
    Blossoms: On the one hand, psychoactive cannabis can be obtained from THC-containing hemp flowers. On the other hand, the flowers of THC-free plants can be used for medicinal products that have no psychoactive effect.
    Why was hemp still able to assert itself today as a crop?
    The historical use of hemp can often be explained by the simple method of cultivation and the high degree of utilization. Because hardly any other crop can have a similar course. Although the plant originates from Asia, it is today cultivated in much of the world.
    The easy cultivation of the hemp plant guarantees a fast growth. Within the one-year growth period, the plant can reach a size of up to 4 meters without intensive care. The hemp can also convince in the crop rotation. Thus, the hemp does not require monoculture cultivation and has a positive effect on subsequent plant species. The deep roots of the hemp plant are also able to loosen dry arches, so that sophisticated cereals can be grown.
    In addition, the hemp is characterized as particularly resistant to pests and weeds. Accordingly, hemp does not rely on fertilizers or pesticides. Successful cultivation of the hemp plant was therefore also possible for several thousand years without modern technology.
    In addition, an average of 97% of the plant can be used and processed. This high degree of utilization thus enables a particularly sustainable and efficient use of the plant. In direct comparison with cotton, hemp also provides three times the amount of fibers that can be used for textile production.
    Overall, hemp has prevailed historically over other crops as the likelihood of successful growth is relatively high. The unique durability of the plant allows a natural cultivation, which was realized thousands of years ago. Although the varied use of the hemp plant has developed only gradually in different cultures, no other plant species can offer so many benefits.