Hemp History Week 2017 Begins Today

Today marks the start of the 8th annual Hemp History Week.

The Hemp Industries Association (HIA) and Vote Hemp launched the 8th annual Hemp History Week today throughout the country, which will run until June 11th.  As event organizers advocate for full federal legalization of industrial hemp farming this Spring, Hemp History Week raises awareness about the environmental sustainability, health benefits, regenerative agriculture potential, and new technological applications of industrial hemp.

This year’s campaign theme, Breaking Ground, focuses on new advances in hemp agronomy research; innovative, breakthrough product applications of hemp; and the need to break new ground in federal legislation efforts to expand hemp farming legalization to farmers and communities in sovereign tribal lands across America. For more information about the campaign, visit: www.HempHistoryWeek.com.

Despite hemp cultivation remaining illegal on the federal level in the U.S., Vote Hemp estimates that the hemp market in the U.S. achieved 25% growth in 2016, reaching a total market value of $688 million. The HIA filed a Petition for Review on January 13, 2017, in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, seeking to block the implementation of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) recently announced Final Rule regarding “Marihuana Extract,” which attempts to give DEA regulatory control over lawfully cultivated and manufactured cannabinoid products, including CBD products. On February 6, 2017, the HIA filed an additional lawsuit against the DEA regarding the agency’s illegal attempt to impede interstate commerce of lawfully cultivated hemp food products.

Over 1500 grassroots events and retailer sales are planned to occur in May and June in celebration of Hemp History Week, coordinated by grassroots organizers, hemp farming advocates, and natural products industry leaders around the country.  To find an event near you, visit our event listing page on the Hemp History Week website:  http://hemphistoryweek.com/get-involved/find-an-event-near-you-coming-soon/.

Hemp is an environmentally sustainable, versatile crop that offers regenerative agriculture solutions for healthy soil, efficient land and water use, and innovative product applications”, Vote Hemp and the HIA said in a Monday press release. “Hemp is a renewable resource that can help reduce market dependency on wood, petroleum, and other non-sustainable industrial agriculture and energy practices, thereby contributing to environmentally responsible food and fiber production, forest conservation, reduction in agriculture pesticide use, and soil remediation.”

They continue; “Hemp sequesters carbon from the atmosphere, mitigating the rising rate of CO2 levels responsible for climate change; and furthermore, pollinators thrive on the proliferous pollen created by hemp flowers.  Hemp bast fiber has shown promising potential to replace graphene in supercapacitor batteries, which could then be used to power electric cars and handheld electric devices and tools. Hemp fiber can be used to create environmentally friendly packaging materials, and hard bio-plastics for use in everything from airplanes to car parts. Hemp houses are also on the rise, as hempcrete has many advantages to synthetic building materials, lumber and concrete.”

Among the fastest-growing categories in the natural foods industry, hemp seed is a “rich source of Omega-3 and Omega-6 essential fatty acids (EFAs), providing both SDA and GLA, highly-digestible protein, and naturally-occurring vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin E and iron”, states the two groups. “An excellent source of dietary fiber, hemp seed is also a complete protein—meaning it contains all ten essential amino acids, with no enzyme inhibitors, making it more digestible by the human body. Hemp seed, milk, ice cream, oil, cereals and snacks, as well as hemp protein powder, dietary supplements and body care are increasingly popular and available at natural and conventional grocers everywhere. Consumers are increasingly turning on to the nourishing health benefits of hemp foods and body products.

Now in its eighth year, Hemp History Week is an industry-wide effort made possible by the support of the leading natural product brands known for manufacturing the highest quality hemp products. These HIA members and sponsor brands include Charlotte’s Web Hemp, Dr. Bronner’s, Farmer Direct Co-op, Manitoba Harvest, Nature’s Path Organic, Nutiva, Pacific Foods, Onnit, Plus+CBD Oil, and Tree Free Hemp.

Hemp History Week, June 5–11, 2017, is an industry-wide initiative of the Hemp Industries Association (HIA) and Vote Hemp.  The HIA is a non-profit trade group representing hemp companies, researchers, farmers and supporters.  Vote Hemp is a national, single-issue, non-profit advocacy group founded in 2000 by members of the hemp industry to remove barriers to industrial hemp farming in the U.S. through education, legislation and advocacy.  For further information, please visit www.TheHIA.org and www.VoteHemp.com.

About Anthony Martinelli

Anthony, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheJointBlog, has worked closely with numerous elected officials who support cannabis law reform, including as the former Campaign Manager for Washington State Representative Dave Upthegrove. He has also been published by multiple media outlets, including the Seattle Times. He can be reached at TheJointBlog@TheJointBlog.com.

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