Hemp is a plant that has has been misunderstood by many for a very long time. Once upon a time, it was mandatory for American farmers to grow hemp for the war effort during WWII. Hemp contains one of the strongest and longest plant fibers of any plant on earth, and can grow healthy without the use of pesticides.

Here are six interesting facts about hemp:

1. The first Ford Model T was made out of hemp

Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motor Company, created a Model T made out of hemp in 1941 which ran on hempbiodiesel. The hemp plastic panels on the car had an impact strength ten times stronger than steel. Ford had a plan to “grow automobiles from the soil.” (Note: a company in France is experimenting with a similar vehicle in current day.)

2. Hemp can be used to build houses

A hemp composite material (with limestone and water) forms a type of concrete (hempcrete) that can be used for home building, at 1/9th the weight. Hempcrete, a bio-composite of hemp hulks and lime, is showing promise for quickly becoming the building material of the future. This fire-proof, bug-resistant material gets stronger the longer it sits instead of decomposing. Hemp has been used to build many homes around the world already.

3. Hemp is a sustainable alternative to plastic

Plastic is made out of cellulose and hemp is known to have a high cellulose content. While the cost of producing petroleum-based plastic is significantly cheaper, the benefits of hemp-based plastic still outweigh its counterparts. Hemp is a more sustainable choice, being that it is biodegradable, durable and non-toxic.  Hemp paper is stronger than wood-based paper, and can withstand more folding. In general, hemp has strongest natural fiber of any source.

4. Growing hemp plants helps clean up radiation

Hemp plants can also help clean up the hazardous mistakes of humankind like it’s doing in Chernobyl, the site of one of the worst radiation disasters known to the world. How does it help you ask? Hemp can remove radiation from the ground and air. The contaminated plants are then cut down and burned. This process is known as phytoremediation.

5. Hemp is a superfood

The incredible hemp plant is edible too! It makes amazing livestock feed and is considered to be a superfood for humans. Hemp seeds contain a balance of essential vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and omegas. On top of that, they are also an excellent source of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), a nutrient found in breastmilk.

6. Unlike marijuana, hemp won’t get you high

With only 0.003% THC, hemp won’t get you high. The only high you will get from hemp is the high on life you experience when you start doing the things you love again without the symptoms of depression, anxiety, and pain that so many people suffer with.

source: The National Hemp Associaton