Bringing It Home

by Chelsea Felton on June 19, 2013

hemp magazineYou’ve heard of hemp, right? Most are familiar with the plant and believe they know all there is to know about it. Personally, I had no idea what the word “hemp” meant until this past spring semester and when I learned its definition, I was still missing a bit of information.

You ever heard of hemp as a sustainable product that could be an essential addition to our health? Not only in the form of food, but in soaps, lotions, clothing and other everyday items?

Before attending the screening of Bringing It Home at Raleigh Studios, I had no idea what to expect from the event. I had never heard about Raleigh Studios, so traveling there was a slight adventure in itself. Furthermore, as with many people, I was under the impression that hemp was simply another word for marijuana or cannabis. So, essentially, I thought it was used as a drug.

table set upWhen I arrived and after I checked in, there were people everywhere mingling and networking. I was informed of the hemp beer that was being served and learned from the overheard conversations of others, that it tasted pretty good. I traveled over to the tables that were set up and it was there where I discovered the many uses of hemp.

I saw hemp thread, hemp soaps, hemp clothing, hemp oatmeal, hemp cereal, hemp protein powder, and raw hemp seeds sold by the package. I also learned that it was Hemp History Week, which I never knew existed. I was stunned by the many uses of hemp and even more so by the fact that I had no idea these things existed.

I had the opportunity to speak with David Bronner of Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps who expressed to me, “we’re all about hemp.” I also spoke with Steve Levine who works with Bronner, Vote Hemp and Hemp Industries Association who told me everything he had on was hemp. Levine also made the statement “You can’t get high off hemp” which confused me because I was still in the mindset that hemp was the same as marijuana. I later learned that the women who put the film together, Linda Booker and Blaire Johnson, also wore clothing made from hemp fabrics, which made me feel bad that I didn’t have on anything hemp.

After mingling, it was time to go into the theatre and watch the film.

Bringing It Home is a documentary film that tells the story of hemp’s past, present and future. It also introduces a global industry that includes the many economical products derived from hemp such as textiles, building materials, auto parts and more. At the heart of the film is the story of a father, Anthony Brenner, who sought to find the healthiest building materials for his house because of his daughter Bailey’s rare disorder and sensitivity to certain chemicals. He discovered the healing power of hemp.

hemp fabricHempcrete, taking the place of concrete, with lime creates a home with walls that catch most of the toxins that enter normal homes. The material is safer on the lungs to take in as opposed to regular building materials. Brenner began to see significant changes in Bailey’s health after moving into a house built with hempcrete and lime.

It is absolutely paramount that industrial hemp and marijuana be seen separately. They both come from cannabis, but have different effects on the body. According to a pocket guide to industrial hemp, hemp is a great source of protein and Omega essential fatty acids. It is free of gluten and has no known allergens. The main distinguishable fact about marijuana and industrial hemp is that the THC level in hemp is too low for anyone to get high on it, but the U.S. is finding it difficult to fully embrace the plant. In all its healthy glory, it is still illegal for farmers to grow hemp in this country. Here lies the movement.

Advocates for industrial hemp are doing everything they can to move the government to saying “Yes!” to industrial hemp for U.S. farmers.

hemp seedIf you would like to know more about industrial hemp, if you are interested in seeing the film or hosting a screening, or if you want to contribute to the cause click here.

I am glad that I am aware of the wonders of hemp. Now I would like a house made from hempcrete and clothing made from hemp fabric!

Tell me about your experiences with hemp! If you’ve already discovered the healing power of hemp, what has it done for you?

What are your thoughts?

Chelsea Felton

Chelsea Felton was born and raised in the Los Angeles County. She is a current student at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, California studying English and journalism. She has a passion for issues of self-esteem, identity, beauty, and love. She has a love for all things art, but a special place in her heart for written works. More specifically, poetry is her deepest interest. She has written a multitude of poems and is now looking to dedicate more time to her craft to find her own style and voice. She plans to someday send a series of novels to publish along with books of poetry as well.

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