Last Tuesday, with little fanfare, Maine
Governor John Baldacci signed into law LD
1159, the Maine hemp farming bill. Maine's
House had previously passed LD 1159 without
objection, and the Senate later passed it by
a vote of 25 to 10. The bill establishes a
licensing regime for farming industrial hemp,
though the licensing is contingent upon
action by the federal government. Maine had
previously passed a study bill which also
defined industrial hemp.
Effective testimony presented to the
Agriculture Committee showing the growing
marketplace for hemp products — as
demonstrated by three huge reusable grocery
bags full of donated hemp products —
and phone calls placed at strategic moments
by supporters in the state were the keys to
the successful passage of the bill.
Eight companies, including Dr.
Bronner's Magic Soaps, French
Meadow Bakery, Hemp Oil
Merry Hempsters and Nutiva, have
donated products to Vote Hemp to help us
educate state legislators about industrial
hemp so they can make intelligent and
well-informed votes on the bills before them.
These companies have been on the leading edge
of the growing hemp food and body care
markets, which are currently estimated to be
$113 million a year in North American retail
sales by the Hemp Industries Association
(HIA). Annual retail sales of all hemp
products are estimated to be around $360
million. With your help, hemp can truly
become the "New Billion-Dollar Crop."
Please make a donation to the Vote Hemp General
Fund or Farmer
Fund today to help us continue our work
and bring hemp farming back to its rightful
place in America.
We need and truly appreciate your support!
Hemp News Update Editor
|Future May See Hemp Cars
Ted Morton and Doug Horner check out various
plant fiber products. Photo credit: Edmonton
By David Finlayson
June 5, 2009
A car made of hemp may sound like someone's
wacky fantasy, but it's as real as General
Motive Industries in Calgary is building a
vehicle using panels and other parts made of
a hemp fiber material that's lighter and
cheaper than glass fiber.
It's being put together to try to win the $10
million XPrize competition for the car that
gets 100 miles to the gallon and beats other
green cars in a race.
|Help Save the Earth, Time to Subsitute Hemp for Oil
By Dara Colwell
As the recession renews interest in the
growing hemp marketplace as a potential boon
for the green economy — even Fox
Business News has touted it — hemp is
becoming impossible to ignore.
But the plant's potential extends far beyond
consumer-generated greenbacks. A low-input,
low-impact crop, industrial hemp can play a
significant role in our desperate shuffle to
avoid catastrophic climate change.
"In terms of sustainability, there are
numerous reasons to grow hemp," says Patrick
Goggin, a board member on the California
Council for Vote Hemp, the nation's leading
industrial-hemp advocacy group.
|HIA Featured Member - Global Hemp
Hemp formed in April 1996 as both an
educational resource and retailer. Founder
Eric Pollitt recently stated, "Education is
essential to the success of any new product,
service or idea. Having evangelized hemp for
over thirteen years, I have to admit that hemp has
come a long way, but there is still a good
deal of work that needs to be done before
many misconceptions are overcome."
One of the primary objectives for Global Hemp
is to get products made in-part or
fully of hemp into the hands of the masses.
Each product sold is a vote for hemp, as
people vote with their wallets. As the hemp
industry continues to grow in terms of sales,
the federal U.S. government will have to take
"The original store opened in November of 2003.
However, for quite some time, we have really
outgrown the feature set of what is available
to us with our current store platform," says
Pollitt. An all-new Global Hemp Store will
open in the second half of June 2009.
The new store will continue to offer the same
great line of products, including body care,
clothing, food and twine. "The two main
differences will be in the look and feel of
the Web site and a slew of new tools that
will benefit shoppers if they choose to take
advantage of them," said Pollitt. For example,
users will be able to search by keyword, but
also by any particular affinity, such as
vegan, paraben free, kosher, etc. They will
also be able to sort by price, brand,
manufacturer and more. Pollitt continues,
"While these types of features are certainly
not new to e-commerce, they are an improvement
over what we currently offer."
Other improvements and new features include
one-page checkout with much improved shipping
options, voluntary user accounts (no need to re-enter
contact info), add to wish list, email a
product page to a friend, live chat, Google
checkout and more. Features that will be
added at a later time include wholesale
accounts and ordering, an affiliate program,
and a mobile version for iPhone users.
If ordering from either the original or new
store, all products are in-stock and are
available for immediate delivery at
[If you are a member of the HIA and would
like to have your company featured here,
please submit a small selection of graphics
and a profile of no more than a few
paragraphs to firstname.lastname@example.org,
or call 207-542-4998 for more information.
Space is limited and is first-come,
first-serve. Your member profile will be seen
in The HIA Member Newsletter, as
well as here in
Hemp News Update which is read by
thousands of subscribers.]
|Hemp Bringing Highs to Farmers' Lows
By Joan Silver
100 Mile House Free
June 16, 2009
100 Mile area farmers are on the cutting edge
of local diversification. They're working
with industrial hemp, a crop that was grown
for thousands of years before the government
"The word hemp was being used for medicinal
or illegal drug side so it got a bad rap. The
government said OK, just quit the whole thing
altogether," said Erik Eising, the hemp
coordinator hired by the District of 100 Mile
House through the Hemp Steering Committee.
He said the government re-introduced the crop
10 years ago and they now have the technology
to test that growers are using the low THC
(tetrahydrocannabinol) plants. THC is the
psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.
How About This for a 'Green' House?
June 17, 2009
This three-bedroom house may look like an
ordinary home, but it is actually a
"revolutionary" property of the future,
constructed from natural hemp for only
Designed by Bedford firm Archial Architect,
the building is constructed from hemcrete, a
mixture of hemp plants and lime.
The plant absorbs around five tonnes of
carbon dioxide during its rapid growth period,
making the fabric of the house carbon neutral.