The production of hemp fiber in the world represents 2.85 kilograms per second (meter), a global production of 90,000 tons. It is a naturally resistant plant whose cultivation does not require fertilizers or chemicals.
Hemp has some excellent upsides for the environment. Apart from its general resilience, it does not require fertilizers or chemicals, it naturally stifles the growth of weeds so doesn’t require herbicides and does not require much irrigation.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) estimates that world hemp production has increased from 50,000 tonnes in the year 2000 to nearly 90 000 tonnes in 2005. Hemp fiber accounts for less than 0.4% of global fiber production. The fiber industries are still dominated by cotton at nearly 75%. World production in 1992 of fiber plants was 10.2 million tonnes with hemp being one-hundredth of this production. In 1992, world production of hemp was 124 000 tonnes. European hemp production in Europe occupies a relatively small place worldwide with 7% of cultivated area. Of the total world production area of 200,000 ha, Europe has approximately 33,000 ha (2017) under cultivation of which 50% is in France.
Nearly half of global industrial hemp production comes from China, with the remainder grown mainly in France (16,000 ha in 2017 translating to 48,264 tonnes), the Democratic Republic of Korea and Spain. The hemp fiber produced is mainly used to make hybrid fabrics of cotton and hemp. Hemp is also grown in Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Canada (33,000 ha in 2017), the USA (10,000 ha in 2016), Australia, and New Zealand.
Hemp has been used by humans since the Neolithic time but became heavily regulated from the 1930’s because of the psychotropic properties of some strains. The 1930’s were a Puritan era in the United States and following the failure of prohibition and with the cooperation of industrial lobbies such as cotton, paper, oil, and nylon there were state-sanctioned campaigns to criminalize and ban hemp and cannabis.
Hemp has many uses, such as fabric, construction, especially in sound and heat insulation, cosmetics, the manufacture of oils, ropes, bedding, use in the form of fuels, stationery, for food and feed, biofuels, for medicinal uses, for recreational use, or as composite materials in combination with plastics.
Hemp does not require fungicides, herbicides, and pesticides. The plants grown for the fiber are planted in tight rows to obtain fine stems and long fibers up to 4.5 meters. Hemp is a high-performance thermal insulator with a thermal conductivity index of between 0.039 and 0.45W / mK. This means hemp insulation is one of the best insulators available. Hemp fiber is also an excellent sound insulation material due to the natural air space between the fibers which naturally and effectively dampens noise.