By Suzanne Rouge
On The Road Again
With a Willie Nelson guitar on board, The Hemp Road Trip will be rolling into towns and onto campuses across the U.S. in a rig geared up with hemp clothing, body products and illustrations of the way BMW and Mercedes use hemp composites in the manufacturing of their cars. However,they won’t be driving an auto like the one Henry Ford created twelve years after he saw where the car industry was headed. Ford addressed the problems of car collisions and gasoline pollution by creating a car made of hemp and sisal which ran on hemp ethanol. It could withstand a sledge hammer without a dent. Consider the lives that could have been saved from crumpled metal crashes.
Rick Trojan will be behind the wheel. Before planting nearly 300 acres and starting the largest hemp farm in the nation, Rick educated himself about hemp, its history, the motivations behind domestic prohibition, and the global impact of the plant. Learning firsthand about the cultivation, harvesting, processing and distribution of industrial hemp and the legal challenges inherent therein, Rick decided to create the Hemp Road Trip and attack the problem of prohibition through nationwide education and outreach.
The road ahead is cluttered with misinformation from the past that has thwarted the once prolific hemp harvest. Hemp was once a crop deemed necessary for building a strong America, and came to save the day in the “Hemp for Victory” campaign during WWII. Hemp was literally cut down because of the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937, and was effectively turned over into the soil in the 1950s. Fear mongering propaganda campaigns sponsored by the paper and oil industries influenced politicians to prohibit hemp production by inaccurately associating it with its cannabis cousin marijuana. One cannot get a high from hemp, unlike marijuana. Hemp products can however, feed one with the most nourishing protein on earth, clothe one in durable material that protects one from UV rays, and provide body products that are healthy for skin and hair. Hemp products have the potential to replace toxic plastics that put cancer-feeding mock estrogens into our bodies that can increase infertility rates.
A home built from hemp is free of mold, mildew and termites and provides protection from outside pollution; its antimicrobial properties purify the air inside. Homes made with hemp are water, fire and earthquake resistant and will last 300 years or more. Hemp oil once greased machinery and most resins, varnishes and paints were made out of flax and hemp oils. Hemp was used in drafting the constitution. Hemp paper is preferred for Bibles because it is long-lasting and doesn’t yellow. Because of its low lignin content, hemp can be pulped using fewer chemicals than wood. Its natural brightness can obviate the need to use chlorine bleach, which means no extremely toxic dioxin being dumped into streams. A hemp field can yield four times what an average forest can yield. Think of the old growth forests which would have been saved by a crop that can be harvested three times a year.
Hemproadtrip.com will be following the National Primary trail to raise awareness among people and politicians about the advantages of reintroducing hemp to revitalize our economy and move toward the goal of sustainability. The ultimate destination is Washington, DC, where participants will attempt to persuade senators and representatives to remove harmless hemp from the controlled substance list so it can again be planted in any state in the union. The purpose of the trip is to educate citizenry, gather commitments from co-sponsors of the Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2015, influence state senators and representatives, promote domestic hemp businesses, educate farmers on the benefits of planting hemp and to document the nationwide campaign. All along the Hemp Road Trip, iHemp radio podcasts will update listeners.
If you would like to support the change in legislation, consider sponsoring the trip. Your logo on the side of the bus can yield seven million views. You can donate gas and expense money at http://hemproadtrip.com/donate.html.
HEMP-EPIC-NESS! Happening Here At Home
One doesn’t have to hit the road to find hemp in Colorado: the industry is budding everywhere. Those curious about what is happening in its third year of hemp propagation can attend the 3rd Annual Hemp Expo (NoCo3) at The Ranch Events Complex in Loveland, Colorado, on April 1–2, 2016.
This premier business and consumer Expo experience, brings together farmers, experts, entrepreneurs, investors, vendors, suppliers and visionaries for two days of education, entertainment and eye-opening policy updates.
The primary goal of NoCo3 is to increase awareness of industrial and nutritional hemp products, technology, innovation, legislation and politics that impact the advancement of hemp re-entering the mainstream with common-sense regulations.
Attendees can learn what’s happening with hemp with over 100 vendors and 50+ speakers, panelists and industry experts so you can continue the conversation and advocate change with your family, neighbors and co-workers. You’ll actually get your hands on hemp at the event by experiencing: building, cooking, painting, fabrics and even tasting beer brewed with hemp.
There is a business to business/industry-focused experience on Friday April 1st for suppliers, buyers, farmers, processors, manufacturers and companies directly involved in the hemp industry and ancillary markets. On Saturday, April 2nd, the Expo is open to the general public. You can pick up hemp products to fill your cupboards and offer your friends. Precedents are being set in Colorado and this event will surely provide a glimpse into a thriving field of possibilities. for hemp.
The interest and opportunity in hemp is expanding. NoCo3 offers a chance for businesses and the general public to gather, learn, network and grow with the goal of integrating hemp back into the American agricultural spotlight. Public support, leadership and involvement will help move this industry forward.
Suzanne Rouge, BSE, is an educator and spiritual mentor, who has studied with a variety of indigenous medicine people in the U.S. and abroad. Suzanne facilitates opportunities for transpersonal growth through Moon Circle events, ceremony, presence practice, aromatherapy, reflexology, Ilahinoor energy work, medicine wheel readings, breath work and art.