What are the possibilities that earlier generations had an idea about the healing properties of hemp and its therapeutic benefits?
Help is derived from the Cannabis Sativa plant, comes from the Cannabaceae plant family, and is also sometimes known as industrial hemp. Hemp is a non-psychotic version of cannabis as it contains less than 0.3% of Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC. THC is the compound responsible for the ‘high’ that users experience when consumed.
Hemp was deemed federally legal in the United States late in 2018 with the passage of the Farm Bill in Congress. This removed its earlier categorization as a Schedule I controlled substance.
Here we go into the details of how Hemp is cultivated and extracted and also some salient differences between Hemp and Marijuana. This should give you a better understanding of Hemp and the different hemp-based CBD products available in the market.
How is Hemp Grown?
Hemp is an annual crop from and is usually cultivated in mild, temperate climates. Full-grown hemp plants can reach a height of 16 feet.
The crops that are grown for fiber are planted tightly together and produce plants that grow between 6 and 10 feet tall. Hemp plants grown for oilseed are sowed at a slight distance from one another. As a result, they tend to have more branches and do not grow to such a height.
Industrial hemp produces the best results when grown in soil with a pH level of 6 or 7. If the soil has a pH level of 5 or lower, this can be fixed by mixing lime in the soil and planting the crop the following year. Hemp crops do not prefer clay-based soil and in this case, such fields should be avoided.
Hemp vs. Marijuana
Perhaps the perennial question that repeatedly does the rounds!
Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is the chemical compound responsible for the psychological effects or ‘high’ that marijuana produces. For Hemp to be deemed legal, it needs to contain less than 0.3% of THC so that users do not feel any of the psychotic effects that come with THC. Hemp primarily has a high CBD (Cannabidiol) content that provides users with a number of health benefits.
Hemp and Marijuana are also grown differently. As stated above, Hemp is usually grown while packed close together and can be grown in a range of mild, temperate climates. Hemp can be grown for a variety of different purposes like seed, fiber, or various CBD products.
In contrast, marijuana requires a tightly controlled environment with warm and humid temperatures. This promotes optimum growth.
How is CBD Extracted?
Usually, natural strains of phytocannabinoid-rich hemp are used for the cultivation of superior yields. A nutrient-rich soil with a pH level of between 6 and 10 is most suitable where growers proceed under strict guidelines and methods.
After the crop is harvested, it is dried and stored in a warehouse. At the time of production, the plants are ground to a rough powder using high-quality standards. The coarse powder is then moved to processing and manufacturing.
Professional growers usually employ a trademarked extraction and purification process. This results in products like broad-spectrum hemp oil.
Once extracted, hemp oil is distilled to remove the hemp extract from the ethanol that had been used during the extraction process.
Refining and Removal of THC
While the extraction process is able to eliminate almost all traces of THC, growers use additional technology to completely remove any hint of undesirable chemicals from the final product. This is then refined to produce CBD products with zero THC.
The final product is tested for quality and strength before being shipped to the market. This ensures the product contains all the essential fatty acids, terpenes, phytonutrients, and cannabinoids in its purest and most consistent form.
CBD products that are derived from Hemp and contain less than the prescribed .3 percent of THC are legal per federal law. However, certain state laws may still deem it illegal.
CBD products that are derived from Marijuana are illegal per federal law but remain legal under the laws of certain states.
It is advisable to check the appropriate state laws in case of travel. It is important to note that over-the-counter CBD products are not approved by the FDA.