Friday, September 22, 2017

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Industrial Hemp "Tea" (FAQ)

Great strides have been made in the past few years in the battle to free the weed.  For those of us not lucky enough to live in a medical or recreational marijuana state, there's hemp, which is legally defined as cannabis with > 0.03% THC.  Thanks to the Agricultural Bill of 2014, industrial hemp is legal to possess & sell in all 50 states (but not to grow).  Hemp contains many of the same beneficial components as regular marijuana; just less THC.  You can find a variety of terpenes, CBC, CBN & other cannabinoids in hemp. 

There are countless CBD products on the market, but now I want to focus on actual hemp buds sold for medicinal use.  There are a variety of strains--which to choose?  The biggest difference between hemp strains is whether they're monoecious or dioecious, which refers to how they reproduce.  Monoecious strains are hermaphrodites of sorts while dioecious plants require pollination from a separate plant to produce their seeds.  Neither kind is "better" than the others; they just thrive in different climates.  CBD content depends largely on soil condition, sun exposure, water & other factors; not just strain.  Industrial hemp is generally grown outdoors in large fields in the countryside of various nations. 

Hemp is grown & harvested in nearly every developed nation in the world, including Lithuania, Slovenia, the UK, Romania, France & Canada.  There are a variety of strains suited to growing in different climates.  Some strains are grown for their high fiber or seed oil production while others are cultivated for their CBD content alone.  Others have a balance of benefits.

Here's a short list of some of the commercial hemp sold as tea online:

- Futura 75
- Ferimon 12
- Carmagnola
- Felina 32
- Finola
- BaOx
- Otto II

DISCLAIMER:  If you're looking for a head high or body buzz, look elsewhere.  Hemp contains only the tiniest trace amounts of THC, so there is no intoxication.  But you can get a nice relaxing effect from smoking or vaping hemp buds if they're high quality.

Here's a quick FAQ about industrial hemp buds/tea:

- Can I smoke it?
-->  Yes, though hemp can be a bit harsh if not cured properly.  I keep mine in a tightly sealed jar which I "burp" daily to cure my buds to perfection.  Even so, hemp is still a bit harsher than marijuana. I wouldn't suggest smoking several joints or bowls by itself or you may end up with a slightly sore throat. 

- How else can hemp tea be consumed?
---> Hemp buds are incredibly versatile.  If you don't fancy smoking, there's always the option of vaping in a dry herb vaporizer.  Hemp can also be brewed into a mild tea with just hot water, or you can extract the cannabinoids more effectively by adding a fat source to your tea (butter, whole fat milk, whipped cream, coconut oil, etc).  People use hemp & CBD for a variety of ailments, such as chronic pain, anxiety & insomnia. 

- What benefits does whole hemp have over other CBD products?
---> While this is a matter of opinion & personal taste, hemp buds have a few important advantages over synthetic or isolated CBD.  The "entourage effect" is one of the most important.  Unlike a lot of CBD products, hemp does not contain propylene glycol or other questionable additives.  It works great as a spliff filler & stepping stone to cut back or quit marijuana.  It's also a great daily health tonic due to its cannabinoid content. And perhaps the biggest benefit of all is the cost, which is usually a fraction of what CBD vape oils & capsules sell for.

- Will I fail a drug test?
---> Quite possibly.  It depends on how much hemp you consume & how soon the test is administered after using it.  Hemp contains trace amounts of THC, which can sometimes register as marijuana on a drug test.  Fortunately, many other substances can cause false positives for pot too, and drug tests are often inaccurate.  If you get a positive drug test result, always demand they send it off to a lab to confirm.  

- Why are so many hemp sellers overseas?  Are there any domestic U.S. vendors?
---> Because the U.S. just recently legalized hemp farming (in some states).  Other countries have been growing it for many years already.  There are a few domestic hemp vendors on eBay & related sites.  Just type "hemp tea" or "hemp flowers" into the eBay search bar to find them.  Domestic vendors have the advantage of reduced transit time & not being held for days by customs but they can sometimes be a tad more spendy. 

- What can we expect for the future of hemp?  
---> The future of hemp looks bright.  Expect some beautiful hemp to be grown here in the U.S. in the next few years.  Maybe some seedless female plants even.  States such as Colorado & Vermont already allow hemp growing & others are getting on board.  

Got a question about hemp that's not answered above?  Leave it in the comments here & I'll do my best to answer!  Happy Hemping :)

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