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When it comes to plastics, there’s a lot of bad news. Many of the products we use every day, from food packaging to toys, are made with plastics. But there’s also a lot of good news to share as well. 

Thanks to innovations in manufacturing and the growing demand for sustainable and recycled products, hemp plastics have come a long way in recent decades. Today, they are often considered to be one of the most versatile materials on the market.

There’s no denying the fact that plastics are useful, affordable, and lightweight. They’re also versatile, easy to work with, and resistant to heat, cold, and moisture. However, they also have some key drawbacks. They tend to be expensive, can be harmful to the environment when not handled correctly, and can cause health issues for some people over time.

The good news is that there are already a number of companies out there that are making an effort to solve the problems associated with plastics. For example, one of the most widespread plastics, polyethylene, can now be produced from renewable sources and biodegradable materials. 

The same goes for PET and HDPE plastics, which are also derived from renewable resources and easily biodegradable. Meanwhile, hemp plastics are a viable replacement for petroleum-based plastics that is both eco-friendly and cost-effective in the long run. In this article, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of using hemp plastic. Definitely making a compelling case for why your should use it on your next future project, Big or Small!

Hemp Plastic Basics

Hemp, or cannabis, is a plant species belonging to the genus Cannabis Sativa. Over time like dogs humans start to select certain plants start to grow some for its medical and psychoactive properties and other for their fibres and strength.

The earliest written account of hemp/cannabis as a medicine, dates back 4700 years ago from the legendary emporor Shen Nung. Shen Nung Cited cannabis as an important herbal remedy alongside ginseng and ephedra

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Cannabis use and cultivation are as old as cultivation itself, evidence for this points the Jomon Period in Japan. Archeologists have found cave paintings with very apparent cannabis plants, featuring their tall stems and distinguishable leaves.

The plants, likely a species of cannabis-sativa (hemp), had many important uses that were beneficial to the existence of pre-historic Japan. The strong fibres of hemp were important in clothing suited for making clothing for the extreme weather, bow strings, and fishing lines. 

The hemp plant itself can be used to make various materials like bio-plastics, rope, textiles, paper, or plastic.

Hemp is the strongest natural fibre in the world. 

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Hemp fibre was needed for numerous maritime purposes on sailing vessels, including rigging sails and making the canvas. Hemp fibres are natural decay resistant, so it is a great choice for such uses. Each ship required miles of hempen line and tons of hempen canvas to maintain its needs. British sailing vessels were never without a store of hemp seed, and Britain’s colonies were compelled by law to grow hemp.

PLASTICS. So Good But, BAD…

Plastic is one of the most popular materials used today. It’s affordable, easy to work with, and can be used for virtually any application thanks to its versatility and resistance to heat, cold, and moisture. However, plastic is not perfect, as it has several shortcomings. One of the most significant issues that arise when using plastic is the negative impact it has on the environment. While it can be reused, plastic can take hundreds of years to fully biodegrade and decompose into harmless components.

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Plastic also has a high carbon footprint since it requires fossil fuels and natural resources to produce. It’s also a non-renewable resource and depletes the environment’s natural resourses such as petroleum, natural gas, and wood. And, plastic products are expensive to replace since they are typically made from a mix of a large number of different and non-renewable materials.

Hemp Plastic Properties

The main selling points of hemp plastics, aside from their eco-friendliness and affordability, are their biodegradability and recyclability. Both of these properties make hemp plastics a perfect solution for the future of sustainable packaging.

First, biodegradability. Hemp is a very absorbent and quick-drying plant. This makes it very suitable for producing plastics with the properties of biodegradability. As long as hemp is placed in an appropriate environment that allows it to decompose, it will completely break down and disappear within a few months.

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Plastic has also been in use for more than 60 years and it has become associated with modern society. This has caused it to accumulate a large amount of pollutants and toxins that have caused environmental and public health problems. Hemp’s biodegradability allows it to break down and decompose into harmless components, which is the best way to stop adding to this problem once and for all.

Hemp Plastic Applications

Hemp plastics are most Starting to become available to the masses and is commonly used for food packaging, beverage packaging, and retail packaging. They can also be used for a wide variety of applications like clothing, hats, shoes, furniture, bags, and so much more.

Hemp Plastics: The Bad

As mentioned above, the biggest drawback of using hemp plastics is their slow biodegradability if not done correctly.

They still degraded 1000X faster than plastics, don’t break down into micro plastics and dont leech out toxins. but if we truly want to solve the problem and not just make it better this is an area that will have to be solved. Finding an ideal for applications where they will be placed in an appropriate environment that allows them to decompose or be reused

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Another downside of hemp plastics is their lack of market penetration. While they are cheaper and lighter than petroleum-based plastics, they are not as widely used as they could be.

This can be attributed to the aforementioned drawbacks, but it also has to do with consumers’ unfamiliarity with hemp products. In order for hemp plastics to gain more market share, consumers and businesses will have to become more familiar with them.

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The Good News: Hemp Plastic is Biodegradable

Hemp plastics are biodegradable and compostable. These properties make hemp plastics a sustainable and eco-friendly alternative to petroleum-based plastics.

If you are looking for a sustainable and eco-friendly plastic with great biodegradation properties, hemp is the best choice. It is biodegradable and decomposes within a few months. This makes it a perfect substitute for petroleum-based plastics that take hundreds of years to biodegrade.

Hemp Plastic: Shaker And Movers

Another great thing about hemp plastic is that it is relatively easy to work with. Hemp is a soft plant-based material that does not require any special processing. This makes it an ideal choice for a wide range of industries, including the food, cosmetics, auto, construction and pharmaceutical industries.

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However, hemp plastics do have one drawback that could be an issue for some applications. Hemp’s soft and flexible nature makes it susceptible to damage when exposed to high temperatures or rough handling. This makes it ideal for a range of applications, but it could be a problem for certain application but I’m sure will be addressed with a solution In the not so distant future. for now we will leave transporting and storing food, medicine, and other sensitive products to the old school PVC plastic… For now! 

Conclusion:

Overall, hemp plastics are a promising new alternative to petroleum-based plastics. They come with a lower carbon footprint, cost-effective, and easy to work with. 

However, they are not as widely used as they could be. Partly because they are still quite new on the market and partly because they are a bit less flexible than traditional plastics, which may make them less desirable for some uses. Nevertheless, considering the benefits of hemp plastic, it seems likely that they will become an increasingly important part of the plastics industry in the coming years.

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