Hemp is a type of cannabis that contains less THC and more CBD. THC is the psychoactive component responsible for providing the effect of a “high.” It can be dangerous when consumed in large amounts. However, CBD is useful in treating various medical conditions.

In December last year, the Trump administration legalized hemp, which contains less than 0.3% THC, by clearing the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, also known as the farm bill. Apart from medicinal values, hemp has a variety of industrial usages, such as clothing, food and beverages, paper, and construction. Let’s look at hemp’s uses in the health and wellness sector.

Hemp’s uses in health and wellness

Although the US federal government has legalized hemp, the FDA hasn’t approved any CBD products except Epidiolex, which treats seizure disorders in patients over two years old. However, many hemp-derived CBD products are used in treating ailments such as anxiety, pain, dystonia, and Parkinson’s disease.

In July 2019, Brightfield Group said it expected the sales of CBD products to reach $5 billion in 2019, year-over-year growth of 706%. The market research company also expects the industry to reach $23.7 billion by 2023. Its report stated that tinctures have the largest share in the CBD market, followed by topicals, vape oils, and capsules. It added that companies are working on developing innovative CBD products, such as facial scrubs, sunscreen, and sparkling water. CBD’s vast market potential appears to have attracted many cannabis players.

Last week, Canopy Growth (WEED) (CGC) introduced its CBD products in 31 US states under the First & Free brand. In October, the company acquired a 72% stake in BioSteel Sports Nutrition, which produces and markets sports nutrition products. The company expects to introduce CBD sports nutrition offerings in US markets by early next year.

In August this year, Aurora Cannabis (ACBcompleted the acquisition of Hempco Food and Fiber. The acquisition could expand Aurora’s hemp-derived CBD business. The company also partnered with mixed martial arts organization UFC to conduct clinical research on the effectiveness of CBD in treating pain, inflammation, and other medical conditions.

However, recently, the FDA announced that it could not conclude CBD products were safe using the available data. It warned consumers that CBD products could cause injury to the liver, drowsiness, and diarrhea. Now, let’s look at the industrial usage of hemp.

Many industrial usages

  • As reported by Hemp Basics, hemp is useful in making ropes, sacks, carpets, nets, and webbing due to its strength and durability. Its durability also helps in making jeans, shoes, and sports clothing.
  • As reported by TreeHugger, hemp seeds contain protein, calcium, and iron. TreeHugger expects the plant to act as an ingredient in food and dietary health supplements.
  • Due to its sturdiness, hemp can come handy in making building materials such as fiberboard and pressboard.
  • The TreeHugger article reported that currently, hemp-derived paper forms only a small percentage of hemp’s use. The article added that hemp has the potential to provide a renewable and sustainable source of pulp for paper but that a lack of innovation has increased its production costs.
  • Hemp oil can be processed to produce biodiesel.

Apart from health and wellness benefits, hemp has a variety of industrial usages. With a wide range of usages, we expect the hemp sector to have a considerable scope going forward. For more cannabis-related news and updates, check out 420 Investor Daily.

This story first appeared at Market Realist.

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