Hemp Seed Shelled
Hemp (from Old English hÃ¦nep, see cannabis (etymology)) is the common name for plants of the entire genus Cannabis, although the term is often used to refer only to Cannabis strains cultivated for industrial (non-drug) use. Industrial hemp has been tried for many uses, including paper, textiles, biodegradable plastics, construction, health food, and fuel, with modest commercial success. In the past three years, commercial success of hemp food products has grown considerably.  Hemp is one of the fastest growing biomasses known, producing upto 25 tonnes of dry matter per hectare per year, and one of the earliest domesticated plants known. For a crop, hemp is relatively environmentally friendly as it requires few pesticides and no herbicides. Cannabis sativa L. subsp. sativa var. sativa is the variety grown for industrial use in Europe, Canada, and elsewhere, while C. sativa subsp. indica generally has poor fiber quality and is primarily used for production of recreational and medicinal drugs. The major difference between the two types of plants is the appearance and the amount of ?9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) secreted in a resinous mixture by epidermal hairs called glandular trichomes. Strains of Cannabis approved for industrial hemp production produce only minute amounts of this psychoactive drug, not enough for any physical or psychological effects. Typically, Hemp contains below 0.3% THC, while Cannabis grown for marijuana can contain anywhere from 6 or 7 % to 20% or even more. Industrial hemp is produced in many countries around the world . Major producers include Canada, France, and China. While more hemp is exported to the United States than to any other country, the United States Government does not consistently distinguish between marijuana and the non-psychoactive Cannabis used for industrial and commercial purposes. Hemp seeds contain all the essential amino acids and essential fatty acids necessary to maintain healthy human life. The seeds can be eaten raw, ground into a meal, sprouted, made into hemp milk (akin to soy milk), prepared as tea, and used in baking. The fresh leaves can also be eaten in salads. Products range from cereals to frozen waffles, hemp tofu to nut butters. A few companies produce value added hemp seed items that include the seed oils, whole hemp grain (which is sterilized as per international law), hulled hemp seed (the whole seed without the mineral rich outer shell), hemp flour, hemp cake (a by-product of pressing the seed for oil) and hemp protein powder. Hemp is also used in some organic cereals, for non-dairy milk somewhat similar to soy and nut milks, and for non-dairy hemp "ice cream." Within the UK, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has treated hemp as purely a non-food crop. Seed appears on the UK market as a legal food product, and cultivation licenses are available for this purpose. In North America, hemp seed food products are sold in large volumes, particularly from Canada to the USA, and typically in health food stores or through mail order.