Could Hemp Be an Answer to Our Current Paper Shortage?

"Make the most of the Hemp seed...The Hemp may be sown anywhere."
A 1914 Federal Reserve Note made of Hemp depicted a Hemp Harvest scene on one side.

Those are the words of president George Washington in a letter to his farm manager at the time. Even then it was widely known the benefits of Hemp. In fact, Hemp has been grown for 10's of thousands of years in areas such as Japan and Korea, and is thought to be one of the first cultivated crops in human history. Hemp reached the US long before George Washington penned those words; the natives were already cultivating and making use of this miracle plant. In fact, only until the 20th century and the introduction of synthetic fibers and plastics did the Hemp industry begin to decline.

One of the oldest forms of paper

Hemp Paper from Japan.

Hemp has been long used to make paper of all types. Archaeologists found a remnant of hemp cloth in ancient Mesopotamia (currently Iran and Iraq) which dates back to 8,000 BC. In fact, The oldest known paper document in Europe is the MozarabMissal of Silos from the 11th century. The decline of the Hemp industry in the 20th century may have contributed to the reduction of Hemp in paper products. But is it time for us to revive this time and tested source of sustainable paper?

Recently, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a major disruption in our so-called way of life. Many of the common things we have come to rely on such as toilette paper and napkins were some of the first items to empty off of shelves, even before any official shutdowns occurred. Each and every American has been made more aware of the disruptions to normalcy when certain parts of the supply chain are disrupted.

Another side-effect of this pandemic is the awareness of how unsustainable we were becoming as a society. Our over reliance on large industrial output has shown to have been a key contributor to ecological disasters such as toxic air and water pollution. With all of this awareness on a global scale, could this be the time for Hemp to return to its place as a sustainable source of raw materials?

Hemp Paper

Hemp Paper makes up a majority share of usage of Hemp in many nations around the world even today. Hemp paper is more expensive to produce, but given the recent price gouging of paper products, this turns out to not be much of a differentiation when choosing wood or hemp as a source for paper. At BIOPHIL Natural Fibers, our D8 Decorticator produces the raw materials needed to make hemp paper. Paper, cloth and other textiles can be made from the fibers and hurds extracted from Hemp stalks.

Contact us today for a sample or to inquire about large scale production runs.