UVa Harvesting First Results from Hemp, Medical Marijuana Project


icon  31 Oct, 2017  /  icon  0        Author: Chloe

With the marijuana industry booming there are a huge number of innovations that are just beginning and a wide number of entrepreneurs and businesses who are entering the industry. 2018 will see a number of winners and losers but those who have niche businesses and those who are good at what they do are set to make a lot of money in a market that has been prohibited since 1937. North Michigan University recently announced that it is launching a new marijuana related degree and others will soon follow. Marijuana companies and research outlets are going to need plant chemistry specialists, which is what the degree is geared towards. And they are not the only university who is beginning to veer towards the new marijuana market, as seen bya project recently coming to fruition at the University of Virginia.

UVa Hemp Harvest

The University of Virginia has completed its first successful harvest of hemp plants in collaboration with a private plant biotechnology company, “22nd Century Group”. The harvest, coming after the first year of a three year, $1.1 million sponsored research agreement between UVa and the company, is one of a number of private-public partnerships across the USA investigating hemp and medical marijuana. Michael Timko wants to renew Virginia as a leading producer of hemp and to restore land depleted by tobacco and mining. According to the biology professor at the University of Virginia:

“The idea is, why should we be importing things from overseas when we could be growing it here…Plus, it creates new sources of revenue for farmers.”

Indeed, it makes lots of sense to produce and research hemp locally instead of importing it from overseas. And it will generate incredible amounts of revenue for local farmers. The danger with marijuana legalization as it stands is that big pharmaceutical complexes and other huge companies will come in, establish monopolies and could cause serious disruptions in the industry. Given the sheer amount of money to be made, it is only natural for these types of companies to establish themselves. This is what their aim is, and it is what they do. The pharmaceutical companies are not simply going to wrap up their operations and quit as marijuana steals all of their clients. They could possibly establish strains of marijuana with an additive thrown in, brand it as superior, get people addicted, patent it and make it incredibly expensive, as they have been doing for decades in the pharmaceutical industry. This is why it is so important that people always have the option of growing their own strain of marijuana from the comfort of their own home without any interference. This way, if the government or private marijuana strain is truly of a sufficient quality, people will purchase it.

Wonderful Hemp

22nd Century Groupis also working with the University of Virginia to develop medical marijuana and cannabinoid extraction processes for medical and therapeutic use.Industrial hemp, although the same species as marijuana, is a distinct strain that has lower concentrations of the psychoactive agent known as THC, making it less useful for patients but with qualities that make it suited for industrial purposes. Hemp is also used to make nutritional supplements, paper, rope and oils. Hemp is an easy plant to grow, but due to a century-long ban it is difficult to find varieties suited to the climate in Virginia. Hemp is one of the most versatile substances on the planet and has been used by all nations for centuries. The book written by Jack Herer “The Emperor Wears no Clothes” (1985) goes into the ban on hemp in detail, including its uses and importance. The use of hemp can also have a number of positive effects across the globe:

If all fossil fuels and their derivatives, as well as trees for paper and construction were banned in order to save the planet, reverse the Greenhouse Effect and stop deforestation; then there is only one known annually renewable natural resource that is capable of providing the overall majority of the world’s paper and textiles; meet all of the world’s transportation, industrial and home energy needs, while simultaneously reducing pollution, rebuilding the soil, and cleaning the atmosphere all at the same time… and that substance is — the same one that did it all before-Cannabis Hemp”( Jack Herer, The Emperor Wears no Clothes)

A Ban on Sanity

Unfortunately, hemp is still banned in the USA, the only nation in the world where hemp is classified as a schedule 1 drug. This means that it is under high levels of regulation despite the possible capability of all the above; supplying the planet with all of its resources and removing the need for deforestation and oil, as well as pretty much solving many of the world’s medical problems including addiction to opiates. Thankfully, as evidenced by this recent project in UVa, it seems that companies and institutions are once again looking into the uses of hemp. Many have speculated that the reason that the Federal government refuse to declassify marijuana is because of its strong relationship with the oil industry. Were hemp to do all that it is supposed to do, it would result in a sharp decline in the price of oil, which the American Empire has based its infrastructure on.

In addition to UVa, the department currently has agreements with James Madison University, Virginia State University and Virginia Tech to conduct research in industrial hemp, including into the use of hemp seed oil in the production of biodiesel.While the department won’t be adding to its industrial hemp research program in 2018, UVasaid some varieties are showing promise. Hopefully hemp will see industrial applications before the end of the 22nd Century.

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