If you read my column regularly, you know that I really want the cannabis industry to grow and thrive. For that to happen, we need successful and thriving cannabis growers. While this sounds obvious, many of today’s cannabis growers are failing. The main reason is the overwhelming focus on Convention on Biological DiversityWhich led to an increase in the supply of cannabis biomass which led to a decrease in wholesale prices.
We have been occupied with a very narrow slice of the potential of cannabis. Whatever happened to the cannabis activist slogan “Food, Fuel & the basic”?
If the cannabis market is growing and maturing, we need to think beyond cannabis. Hemp Pioneers develop and sell hemp building materials such as hemp concrete, hemp wood, hemp insulation and other products aimed at the construction industry. Processing facilities require proximity to hemp farms to reduce shipping costs, as well as a reliable supply of hemp – a lot of it. Today there is simply not enough we Farmers grow hemp fiber to make this happen.
Plant-based foods are now prevalent. Ask the fast food chains: burgers that contain no meat and de-hensed chicken are increasingly popular. (Want fries with that?) One doesn’t have to be vegan, let alone vegan, keto, or paleo, to eat vegan meals these days. Nobody is more surprised than me, I’ve been a vegetarian since the 70’s. I never thought I would live to see the day when supermarkets sell milk that comes from plants and not from cows or goats.
Will you pick up building materials from hemp? How Long Before Starbucks Offers Hemp Bleach? woe today Convention on Biological Diversity Cannabis growers transition to food and fibre? Will they survive long enough to supply these emerging markets?
The real question is what varieties of hemp will growers grow to boost the food and fiber markets? Definitely not Charlotte’s net or cherry wine. Where will the seeds come from? Who has the genes that are the key to the future of cannabis?
Believe it or not, the we The government has a cannabis seed bank. The Department of Agriculture has a large and growing pool of cannabis genes stored in the Cannabis Germplasm Repository. This treasure trove will enable cannabis growers to grow long-forgotten heirlooms that may be well suited to the cannabis industries of the future.
Cannabis germplasm repository is part of National System of Plant Genetic Origins. The mission of the Cannabis Collection is to conserve as much and geographically diverse cannabis genetics as possible and distribute them to plant breeders, researchers and educators. Their long-term vision is to expand the collection to include more types of cannabis and its classification for fiber, agricultural, morphological, horticultural, and secondary metabolic traits. The Cannabis Germplasm Repository wants individuals with unique and interesting germplasm to consider donating a sample seed to the collection.
Why is this effort so important? It catalogs what is there, and keeps it for future use. Remember: extinct forever. Everything we lose is gone forever. As new markets emerge, growers need to grow cultivars tailored to each new niche. Going forward, cannabis growers need access to a catalog that is as wide and diverse as possible.
This is the best part. If we agree that new cannabis markets such as hemp concrete and hemp foods can have a bright future, farmers need all the help they can get. If help is coming from we The government, one day hemp will be planted at the same size as wheat, soybeans and corn today.
Thousands of acres of cannabis across multiple states. nothing less.
Jerry Whiting is the boss leblanc CNE, a Seattle-based hemp company focused on plant medicine and fiber product development. He writes a monthly column on cannabis for Northwest Leaf, from which this article was taken.
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