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Mar-21-2021 21:22printcomments

What's Happening in the Hemp Industry: Disruptive Innovation Examples

COVID-19 has not had a drastic effect on the hemp business sphere.

cannabis marijuana

(SALEM, Ore.) - Owing to the passage of the 2014 and 2018 farm bills, industrial hemp became available as an agricultural commodity in the United States.

Industrial hemp, which is sourced from the cannabis sativa species, is used all over the globe to manufacture various consumer products. In 2019, the hemp industry reached $5 billion in annual revenue. It’s expected that it will be as high as $36 billion by the end of 2026.

This doesn’t come as a surprise taking into consideration that there’s a growing demand for hemp in the automotive, construction, food and beverages, and textile industries.

Rising awareness about the benefits brought about by industrial hemp, not to mention increasing legalization to cultivate cannabis in many countries, is expected to continue to drive the market for many years to come.

The hemp industry has never stalled due to a lack of innovation. Au contraire, it relies on groundbreaking technologies and consistently comes out with the best products and processes.

Many say that the hemp industry is moving faster than others. What does this mean for startups and entrepreneurs? Hard as it may be, they can still break into the saturated market if they have an original idea.

The hemp industry, which is eager to embrace technology, is expecting the next wave of innovation. Technological innovation fuels the development of this highly lucrative sector.

In what follows, we'll take a look at the disruptive innovations in the hemp industry. Keep on reading because it's worthwhile.

Cultivation and manufacturing machinery

Cultivating and processing hemp is continually evolving. And so is the equipment needed to produce the crop. Artificial intelligence, which is everywhere you look, is used to grow hemp.

Custom-designed automation monitors growth rate through the vegetative state. Due to this, it's possible to forecast yield productions in advance with remarkable precision. Some plants, such as cannabis, are vulnerable to mold and even rot if they're grown in inadequate conditions.

Artificial intelligence, together with robotics, can help keep track of lighting conditions, nutrient needs, water needs, and so forth. The outcome is that companies produce the best products with the fewest resources possible.

For the hemp industry to flourish, processing technology is of paramount importance. From the roots to the leaves and flowers, every component of the hemp plant can be used to manufacture industrial hemp.

The hemp flowers and buds can be used to extract seed oil. CBD extracts are obtained from the hemp plant's stalks and stems via the process of isolation.

Because of significant advances in decortication techniques, it has been possible to develop manufacturing machinery that takes raw hemp and processes it into separate building blocks.

The result is unique hemp-based products in mass production. Given that the focus in the industry right now is on flower-forward hemp cultivars, it doesn't come as a surprise that many farms use clones and seedlings.

Hemp and CBD oil

Cannabidiol is a natural component of industrial hemp. CBD oil has a considerable content of cannabidiol, being made from the flowers, leaves, and stalks.

The experts at PureHempFarms, who specialize in the cultivation and distribution of premium industrial hemp, inform us that while CBD oil can be made from the entire cannabis plants, smokable buds are obtained from hemp flowers only.

Additionally, they draw attention to the fact that hemp flowers represent the most potent source of pure concentrations of cannabidiol. Better extraction technologies have moved into the limelight.

There's been a transition from basement and kitchen laboratories to legitimate ones, which address various consumer needs concerning cannabinoids and terpenes.

Examples of extraction technologies include but aren't limited to alcohol extraction equipment, butane extraction equipment, CO2 extraction equipment, and multi-use or other types of extraction equipment.

Following the extraction and purification of the industrial hemp, the cannabis is transformed into cannabidiol liquids and oils. There's a difference between hemp oil and CBD oil. To be more precise, CBD oil has a higher concentration of cannabidiol, which is why it has so many potential health benefits.

Hemp oil, which is extracted from the seeds of the cannabis sativa plant, doesn't contain any CBD. Nevertheless, it's rich in nutrients, fatty acids, and useful bioactive compounds that can be great for your health.

Quality plastic that doesn’t have a devastating effect on the planet

Plastic has slowly but surely transformed into our number one enemy. It sticks around in the environment for a long, long time, endangering wildlife and spreading toxins. Plus, it contributes to global warming. The good news is that plastics have started to be made from hemp.

Hemp bioplastic is a biodegradable polymer that is obtained from the cellulose and lipids found in the stalk and seeds of the hemp plant.

Thanks to technological advancements, many forms of bioplastic are available these days, which are harder, more durable, and even gel-like.

Not only can hemp replace plastic but also help curb pollution. Hemp plastic is environmentally-friendly because it’s biodegradable, recyclable, renewable, and safe to manufacture.

For the time being, hemp plastic is expensive. That’s because only very few people are aware of its existence and, therefore, there isn’t sufficient technological advancement in the field.

It will take some time for it to compete with petroleum plastics. Hemp is already making its way into objects such as cars, so there’s hope that it will find its way into even more objects.

Hemp proponents are urging people to switch from petroleum plastics to hemp plastics as a way to reduce the harmful effects on our environment. Who knows? Maybe the transition will take place sooner than expected. While bioplastic can’t solve all our problems, it offers promising results.

To sum up, technology has had a significant impact on the hemp industry, helping farmers and processors alike increase production and lower costs. We’ve still got a long way to go, fortunately.

Businesses that are capable of addressing the current and future challenges can take advantage of substantial returns. The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t had a drastic effect on the business sphere, meaning that there are lucrative growth opportunities.

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Sean Flynn was a photojournalist in Vietnam, taken captive in 1970 in Cambodia and never seen again.