Hemp is often referred to as the “green buffalo”, as much like the buffalo was to the Native Americans, all parts of the hemp plant can be used and have well defined purposes. Cannabis Sativa L., also known as hemp (or industrial hemp), is a versatile plant that is grown primarily for it’s fibre and seeds.
Industrial hemp is a sustainable, renewable source of high quality fibre. Hemp fibre comes from the stalk of the hemp plant. It’s properties of strength and flexibility make it an ideal raw material for textile production, as well as to make paper and plastics. Hemp seeds form the edible part of the Cannabis Sativa L. plant. High in both omega 3 and 6 fats, and protein, hemp seeds are a nutritional powerhouse and super food.
At this year’s Summer Fancy Food Show in New York City, I came across one of the market leaders in the world of hemp. Manitoba Harvest is a Canadian company who grow hemp seeds, and make and sell a comprehensive range of hemp seed-based products. Established 21 years ago, Manitoba Harvest’s product range has expanded over the years from hemp oil, to hemp hearts, hemp proteins, and a growing range of bars and granolas.
So, why Canada? The hemp plant is an oil seed plant that grows best in geographic locations that have a cold climate, combined with warm summer days and cold nights. Hence, Canada provides ideal climatic conditions for hemp to grow and thrive.
I spoke to John Durkin, Vice President of Sales at Manitoba Harvest, about his company and their hemp. You can hear the interview by clicking on the play button below.