Seeds such as flax, chia and hemp are some of the most sustainable plant foods you can consume. Not only do they provide a large number of nutrients and health benefits for each person, but their production also has a positive impact on the environment. Many people believe that hemp is an environmentally friendly plant due to its low water consumption, ability to preserve trees, and potential to create biodegradable and non-toxic products. Hemp is a weed, so it grows quickly with little water and without the need for pesticides. Hemp takes up relatively little space, produces more pulp per acre than trees, and is biodegradable.
It also returns nutrients to the soil and sequesters carbon dioxide. This makes hemp a more sustainable and ecological crop than many of the crops that dominate human cultivation today. This is especially important as we have seen a remarkable change in the Earth's environment that requires a sustainable solution. In theory, hemp has many potential benefits from an environmental perspective. It doesn't need pesticides or a lot of water, and hemp roots grow up to 3 meters deep, which can help improve soil structure and nutrient levels, leading to higher yields in subsequent crops.
Products made from hemp are stronger, more durable, and biodegradable. Hemp itself can act as a storehouse of nutrients for consumers. The environmental benefits of hemp include its strong, durable, natural fiber compared to alternative sources. Industrial hemp is a high-biomass crop that has the capacity to sequester greater amounts of carbon through photosynthesis. Companies like Benhaim have expanded into hemp plastic with the goal of becoming “the largest hemp plastic manufacturer in the world, delivering plastic polymers at competitive prices to replace petroleum-based materials”.
They even produce custom-made boutique guitars using hemp for the body, straps, picks, and volume buttons. Rich in dietary vitamins and minerals such as potassium and magnesium, hemp seeds bring a healthy touch to every meal. This is another environmental benefit of hemp because it recovers nutrients that could otherwise seep below the root zone and enter groundwater. The Soil Association is currently conducting an Innovative Farmers project to investigate how industrial hemp production could help transition to a low-carbon economy. China is the world's largest producer and exporter of hemp and is responsible for around 20% of the world's total hemp production. Hemp can also help us fight against global warming by reducing the planet's temperature.
In collaboration with scientists from Cranfield University and the British Hemp Alliance, research is being conducted to quantify the environmental benefits of growing hemp. Companies like Hemp Foods Australia and Elixinol have explored the plant's rich nutritional qualities while also selling cosmetic products. While sustainability does not always translate into rapid economic growth, it is safe for both the environment and humanity.