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Microdecorticator: Processing Hemp Fibre and Hurd

What is a Microdecorticator?

A microdecorticator is a machine used for processing hemp fibre and hurd. It is a small-scale version of the larger decortication machines used in industrial hemp processing. The microdecorticator was developed to meet the needs of small-scale farmers and processors who want to process hemp on their own without the need for expensive equipment. It has the potential to revolutionize the hemp industry by providing an affordable and efficient way to process hemp.

The Importance of Hemp as a Sustainable Resource

Hemp has been used for thousands of years for its various applications. It is a sustainable crop that requires minimal water and pesticides. Hemp is also a carbon sink, which means that it absorbs more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than it emits. It can be used for a wide range of products, including food, textiles, paper, building materials, and fuel. Hemp is also a source of CBD, a non-psychoactive compound that has been shown to have numerous health benefits.

The Anatomy of Hemp: Understanding Fibre and Hurd

Hemp is a versatile plant that has two main parts: the fibre and the hurd. The fibre is a long, thin strand that runs the length of the plant. It is used for textiles, paper, and other products that require strength and durability. The hurd is the woody core of the plant, and it is used for building materials, animal bedding, and other products that require bulk and absorbency.

Traditional Processing Methods vs. Microdecortication

Traditional hemp processing methods involve manual labor, which can be time-consuming and inefficient. The fibre and hurd are separated by hand or with the use of a hand-operated machine. This process can be slow and can lead to inconsistent results. The microdecorticator, on the other hand, is a machine that automates the process of separating the fibre and hurd. This results in a faster and more consistent process.

The Advantages of Microdecortication for Hemp Processing

The advantages of microdecortication for hemp processing are numerous. It is a more efficient and cost-effective way to process hemp than traditional methods. It also results in a higher quality product, as the microdecorticator is able to separate the fibre and hurd more effectively than manual labor. Additionally, the microdecorticator is a scalable technology that can be used by small-scale farmers and processors as well as larger industrial operations.

How a Microdecorticator Works: A Technical Overview

A microdecorticator works by using a combination of mechanical and pneumatic processes to separate the fibre and hurd. The plant material is fed into the machine, where it is mechanically broken down into smaller pieces. It is then transported through a series of air ducts, which separate the fibre from the hurd. The fibre is collected in one container and the hurd in another. The process is automated and produces consistent results.

The Role of Microdecortication in the Hemp Industry

Microdecortication has the potential to revolutionize the hemp industry by providing an affordable and efficient way to process hemp. It allows small-scale farmers and processors to enter the market and compete with larger industrial operations. It also allows for more consistent and higher quality products to be produced, which can lead to increased demand for hemp-based products.

Microdecortication and Quality Control: Improving Product Consistency

One of the main advantages of microdecortication is its ability to improve product consistency. Traditional processing methods can lead to variability in the quality of the final product, as manual labor can result in uneven separation of the fibre and hurd. The microdecorticator, on the other hand, produces consistent results, which can lead to higher quality products and increased customer satisfaction.

The Economics of Microdecortication: Cost and ROI

The cost of a microdecorticator can vary depending on the size and complexity of the machine. However, it is generally more affordable than larger industrial decortication machines. The ROI of a microdecorticator can be significant, as it can save farmers and processors time and labor costs. It can also lead to increased revenue, as the higher quality product can command a higher price.

Scaling Up: Microdecortication for Industrial Hemp Operations

Microdecortication is a scalable technology that can be used by both small-scale farmers and larger industrial operations. For larger operations, multiple microdecorticators can be used to increase processing capacity. This allows for more efficient and cost-effective processing of hemp, which can help to increase the profitability of the operation.

Challenges and Limitations of Microdecortication

One of the main challenges of microdecortication is the need for proper maintenance and upkeep of the machine. It is also important to ensure that the machine is operated correctly to prevent damage to the machine or the product. Additionally, microdecortication may not be suitable for all types of hemp, as some varieties may require different processing methods.

The Future of Microdecortication in Hemp Processing

The future of microdecortication in hemp processing is bright. As the demand for hemp-based products continues to grow, the need for efficient and cost-effective processing methods will increase. Microdecortication has the potential to meet this need and revolutionize the hemp industry. With continued research and development, the technology will likely continue to improve and become even more effective and efficient.

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High on Hemp: A Promising Future for the Economy!

Hemp is a versatile plant that has been used for centuries for various purposes. From textiles and paper to food and medicine, hemp has a wide range of applications. Recently, hemp has gained attention in the economy as a potential game-changer. Hemp cultivation and production have created a buzz in the market, and the industry is expected to grow in the coming years. In this article, we will explore the potential of hemp for a healthy economy and why it is the green gold that everyone is talking about.

The legalization of hemp in many countries has opened new opportunities for farmers and entrepreneurs. Hemp cultivation is a cost-effective and sustainable alternative to traditional crops. It requires less water, pesticides, and fertilizers, making it a more environmentally friendly option. Moreover, hemp has a short growth cycle and can be used for multiple purposes. This means that farmers can get multiple yields from a single crop, resulting in higher profits.

Apart from farming, the hemp industry has also created jobs in various sectors, including manufacturing, sales, and research. Hemp can be used to produce a wide range of products, from textiles and clothing to building materials and biofuels. The demand for these products is increasing, and so is the need for skilled workers. This has resulted in the creation of new jobs and the growth of the economy.

With its many applications, the hemp industry has the potential to generate revenue for the government. Hemp products are subject to taxes, and the industry can contribute to the country’s GDP. Moreover, hemp can also be used for medicinal purposes, and the pharmaceutical industry can benefit from its therapeutic properties. This can result in increased tax revenue and a boost to the economy.

Hemp: The Green Gold that’s Creating a Buzz in the Market!

The hemp industry is growing at a rapid pace, and investors are taking notice. Hemp companies are going public, and the market is showing a strong appetite for hemp-based products. From CBD oil to hemp-based clothing, the demand for these products is increasing, and so is the value of the industry. According to a report by Grand View Research, the global hemp market size was valued at $4.71 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 15.8% from 2020 to 2027.

The popularity of hemp-based products is not just limited to consumers. Businesses are also looking to incorporate hemp into their operations. Hemp can be used as a sustainable alternative to plastic, and companies are exploring ways to make hemp-based packaging. Hemp can also be used as a source of biofuel, and the transportation industry is looking to incorporate it into their operations.

The potential of hemp is not just limited to the economy. Hemp can have a positive impact on the environment as well. Hemp is a natural carbon sink and can be used to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Moreover, hemp cultivation can help prevent soil erosion and promote soil health. By promoting the growth of hemp, we can create a sustainable future for ourselves and the planet.

In conclusion, the hemp industry has the potential to create a healthy economy while promoting sustainability and environmental stewardship. With its versatility and wide range of applications, hemp is a valuable resource that should be explored further. As more countries legalize hemp cultivation, we can expect to see the industry grow even further. So, let’s embrace the buzzing buzz of hemp and create a brighter future for ourselves and the planet.

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The future for hemp: What is at stake?


Lorenza Romanese, Managing Director of the European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA) examines the future of hemp and explains in this vein, what is at stake, as well as looking back at its fascinating history.

Hemp has provided essential raw materials and a high protein and health-promoting food source for centuries, more likely millennia. The hemp plant has been used for construction, paper, textiles, ropes and other applications contributing significantly to the advance in western civilisation. Hemp was grown in Europe and most countries worldwide until the 1930s, after which cultivation got almost eradicated.

Since the end of the 20th century, hemp is making a comeback and is emerging as one of the most rapidly growing agricultural and industrial markets that have emerged for decades.

To clarify, we are talking about “hemp” (Cannabis sativa L.), which is authorised under the EU’s Common Catalogue of Varieties of Agricultural Plant species (Reg. 1308/2013) and contains less than 0,2% of THC, which means it is not psychoactive.

The world is facing enormous challenges – how can we transition from high carbon to a low carbon economy? To achieve this, hemp has a valuable contribution to play and offers economically viable solutions to help address some of the major challenges our societies currently face, including pollution, carbon emissions, plastics waste, world hunger, people’s health, lack of jobs and rural underdevelopment.

What are the key benefits of hemp?

The production of Hemp is carbon negative, which means it absorbs more carbon from the atmosphere during its growth than is emitted by the equipment used to harvest, process and transport it.

It is 10,000+ environmentally responsible industrial and consumer applications including bioplastics, composites, construction materials, high protein foods and beverages, health-promoting food supplements, textiles, paper products, biofuel, graphene substitutes.

It gives major environmental benefits. Significant carbon sequestration, enhanced biodiversity and a late season food source for bees, land reclamation and phytoremediation.

Also, hemp can be a profitable cash crop for farmers when permitted to utilise the whole plant.

What are the barriers to growth?

Almost 60 years ago, the hemp plant, which was widely used as food for centuries, was erroneously designated alongside the cannabis (marijuana) flower as a narcotic substance in the UN Single Convention. This has caused a lot of confusion as cultivation of cannabis plants for industrial purposes is clearly exempted from the scope of international control because the industrial hemp sector has been severely restricted in terms of onerous licensing procedures and unclear and complex European and national regulations dealing with hemp-derived food products.

Hemp foods and drinks from flowers leaves and extracts re-emerged in the 1990s. In response to the introduction of the Novel Food catalogue in 1997, the hemp industry collated data about the volume of sales and product types which use hemp flowers and leaves and submitted it as requested. In 1998, the hemp industry received written confirmation from the EU (PAFF Standing Committee) that: “it was decided that foods containing parts of the hemp plant do not fall under the EU Regulation EC258/97 on Novel Foods and Novel Food ingredients.” The second letter from PAFF confirmed hemp flowers and leaves are food ingredients.

Hemp naturally, abundantly contains cannabinoids, is best known as cannabidiol (CBD). In the 21st century, awareness is rapidly increasing that consuming healthy foods and supplements can be an important factor for our overall health and wellbeing. This prompted the introduction of hemp extracts in food supplements, commonly known as CBD oils. The reason hemp foods is so important to our health is that all humans and vertebrates have an important physiological system, the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS fulfils a vital role and aids homeostasis. Whilst our body produces its own, so-called endocannabinoids, this is not necessarily sufficient and we can maintain and support this important physiological system by consuming phytocannabinoids, as we used to do for millennia.

Hemp flowers, leaves and extracts are a traditional food

Historical records show that naturally rich in CBD/cannabinoids hemp oils, flowers, leaves and hemp extracts were widely consumed. It was an integral part of our European diet.

During the last three years, the popularity of CBD containing food supplements prompted the PAFF committee to revisit the permitted consumption of hemp products and on 20th January 2019, the same committee that previously acknowledged in writing to the hemp industry 20 years earlier, that hemp flowers and leaves is a food now changed their minds and changed the Novel Food catalogue only permitting seeds for food use. Overnight the legitimate hemp foods industry was declared novel, meaning there is no history of consumption prior to May 1997.

In response, EIHA has prepared pieces of strong, extensive evidence that hemp cannabinoids/CBD have been consumed in Europe for centuries (insert a link to the evidence). One of the oldest cookbooks in the world, De Honesta et Voluptate (1475) lists a recipe on how to make modern-day CBD oil, medieval monks ate hemp soup, an Italian recipe (1887) shows how to make hemp flower tortellini, a Polish cookbook lists hemp as a vegetable, the Maltos-Cannabis Hemp Extract drink won a prize at the World Exhibition in Antwerp in 1894 and more. This evidence clearly shows that it is disingenuous to argue that leaves and flowers in food are novel today.

De Honesta et Voluptate (1475)

Why is the use of the hemp flower and leaves so important for the entire hemp industry?

The hemp flower and the leaves are the most profitable part of the plant. If the hemp sector is only allowed to use the seeds and stalks, alongside onerous licensing procedures, this is simply not sufficiently financially viable and undermines investment into R&D and the development of large- scale, next generation, environmentally responsible industrial and consumer products. The recent rewording of the Novel Food catalogue, therefore, threatens the entire European hemp industry as the process is expensive and a novel food application takes several years to assess.

the future of hemp
Hemp field

Due to the fact that the hemp industry received written confirmation from the EU (PAFF Standing Committee) in 1998 that hemp flowers/leaves are permitted for food use and the hemp industry can provide ample and substantial evidence that naturally occurring CBD has been in the human food chain for millennia, we request that our extensive evidence is considered and that the novel food catalogue is reworded, permitting hemp foods containing cannabinoids/CBD up to levels that are naturally present in the plant (which was the status in 2018). This means that CBD containing food supplements contain no more than we would naturally consume if eating traditional hemp foods.

So, what is at stake?

The Hemp plant is capable of helping to solve some of the core issues we face:

  • Foods and supplements (seeds/flowers/leaves) maintain and support our health.
  • The stalk provides zero carbon raw materials ideal for the next generation of environmentally responsible applications, helping mitigate the environmental emergency.
  • The hemp industry has a real opportunity to play a leading role in the development and expansion of a low carbon, environmentally responsible industry, bringing a new ‘cash-crop’ to European agriculture and creating jobs across the entire supply chain.
  • For hemp to be a viable cash crop for our farmers and processors, they need to be empowered to utilise the whole plant.
  • EIHA and its members offer our extensive knowledge and expertise to help establish a framework permitting the use of the whole plant that satisfies both regulatory agencies and industry.

“CBD has been found to be generally well tolerated with a good safety profile.” Excerpts from a letter of WHO Director General to Secretary-General of the United Nations, July 23, 2018

“The Science Museum’s three-storey building is constructed using a hemp-lime envelope and was so effective that they switched off all heating, cooling and humidity control for over a year, maintaining steadier conditions than in their traditionally equipped stores, reducing emissions while saving a huge amount of energy.” Dr Mike Lawrence is Director of the University of Bath’s new research facility, the Building Research Park

“It has been calculated that the serial implementation of the lightweight biomaterials on the high-volume vehicles will deliver a reduction of 40,000 tons of CO2 emissions and the ability to drive an additional 325 million kilometres with the same quantity of fuel.” Source: Autocar Pro Newsdesk 3/2018.

Lorenza Romanese

Managing Director
European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA)

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