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Is Hemp Clothing Sustainable? Sustainability Benefits Of Hemp Clothing.

Why Is Hemp Clothing Sustainable?

Hemp plant glowing in the sun

If you’ve ever heard about hemp clothing you will most likely know that one of the main reasons why it is becoming more popular is because of the sustainability benefits. Today we will look at why hemp clothing is so sustainable and what the difference is between the most used textile fabric nowadays, cotton, and the rising star, hemp.

First of all, we have to address one of the biggest sustainability benefits of hemp. The hemp plant is known to be a natural carbon trap. As said by the European Industrial Hemp Association: ”The production of Hemp is carbon negative, which means it absorbs more carbon the atmosphere during its growth than is emitted by the equipment used to harvest, process and transport it”. To put this into perspective, 1 metric ton of hemp absorbs 1.5 metric tons of Co2 from the atmosphere. Global cotton cultivation on the other hand accounts for 220 million metric tons of Co2 per year!

A second considerable sustainability benefit of hemp is that it needs a lot less water to grow compared to cotton. Cotton needs around 10.000 liters of water to grow around 1 kg of clothing textiles (this is roughly 1 T-shirt and one pair of jeans). Hemp only needs around 2.719 liters to producere the same amount of clothing textiles. This is mainly since hemp is considered a weed, it’s not weed but it’s still a weed, so it needs a lot less water to grow.

Another good comparison is the amount of land needed to grow hemp. Hemp only needs half the amount of land to grow the same amount of textile fabrics compared to cotton. You could only imagine the amount of land we could use for more favourable things if all cotton production would be changed to hemp production. Unfortunately, we are still a long way from this happening but we believe that one day we will get there. Talk about optimism.

One other benefit of hemp compared to cotton is also one of the most important ones: the use of pesticides. Cotton consumes more pesticides than any other crop in the world. Even though cotton is grown on only 2.5% of the agricultural land worldwide, it still accounts for around 16% of the pesticides used worldwide. Hemp on the other hand uses no pesticides to grow. This is once again due to the fact that hemp is a weed. It can thrive in almost any landscape.

The hemp plant also helps to regenerate the soil, you can see it as a kind of medicine for the ground, because of all the nutrients in the plant. Because the roots of the hemp plant grow around 9 feet deep, the soil in which hemp grows will always be strengthened by its presence. This means damaged soil will be restored and can grow a wider range of crops.

Out of the wide range of sustainable choices people can make in order to help our environment, hemp can be considered as one of the ultimate favourites.

The tip we would like to give everyone is to always look at the product details when shopping for clothes. If you happen to see hemp as one of the textile fabrics you can take a breath and know that you are choosing to save the land you stand upon!

 

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