Hemp plant plays an important role in sustainable, organic agricultural and industrial productions. Industrial grade hemp is the variety of “cannabis sativa” and is different from the hemp plant used as a drug.
Industrial grade hemp grows quickly. Production is up to 25 tons/acre per anum. Hemp is purest, and most complete plant on the earth. Referred to as a negative carbon material. Environment-friendly, it requires no pesticides or fertilizers and cleans the area it is in of weeds. The hemp plant not only quickly replenishes, but it also adds more essential nutrients to the soil. It’s good for both soil and the atmosphere.
The use of hemp dates some 12000 years and has seen a variety of purposes ranging from ship sails, textiles, clothing, rope, hemp paper, and food. The texture similar to that of linen, pure hemp still today has a variety of industrial and agricultural uses.
What is Hemp Paper and what is the source to get?
Hemp paper is a variety of paper which we can obtain from the pulp of fibers of the industrial hemp plant. There are a lot of usages of hemp paper like cigarette paper, banknotes and filter papers.
Hemp Pulp vs. Wood Pulp
If we compare hemp pulp with the wood pulp, hemp pulp offers a 4 to 5 time’s long fibers, with a lower lignin fraction as well as higher tear resistance and strength. The cost is also 4 to 5 times higher than the paper from wood.
Early Usages of Hemp Paper
If we went back in the 13th century, the hemp paper came to Europe via ME. Some said that the first copies of the Bible were made from the hemp paper. Till 19th century the hemp paper is used for the writing and printing. After that research on wood pulp and paper take place and they found that the wood pulp paper is cheaper than the hemp paper.
In Russia, in 1818 they used to produce the hemp paper for bank notes, stamp papers, bill of credits, postage stamps, bonds, stocks and other paper for watermarked needs.
Usage of Hemp Paper in 20th Century
In late 1916’s the scientists discover the hemp paper from the industrial hemp plant. They have proven that the hemp paper is better than the paper from the wood pulp. They have found that choosing hemp raw material for papermaking is a good choice. France using the varieties of hemp paper to manufacture cigarette paper.
The rising demand for tree-based paper is starting to take a greater and greater toll on the natural ecosystem. For now, things are relatively okay. The rate of old-growth deforestation is only around 10%, whereas the other 90% of tree-based paper products come from sustainable foresting practices that replace trees as trees used.
We have an alternative plant that can be harvested multiple times a year and can grow a complete cycle in three months. That plant is hemp, and until now there have not been very many hemp paper options. That is starting to change.
Hemp is the perfect crop for replacing paper products because it is far more renewable than trees. Hemp is capable of being harvested multiple times a year and can grow to fruition in a mere three months. Better still, it can be grown nearly anywhere in the world, so there is no need for only one geographical area to develop a specialty for hemp.
Top Usages of Hemp Paper
The hemp paper produced 120,000 tons per year in Asia and Europe. The market for hemp paper is stable and high priced. There are some main usages of hemp paper;
Hemp Paper for Cigarette
If we talk about the European market than the pure hemp rolling paper is a number one usage of hemp paper. Due to its fiber characteristics allow for resilience and tear strength to thin papers. The smoking paper market is growing internationally and using the hemp paper.
Hemp Paper for Stationary
Using hemp content for making the hemp paper a statement, and is an excellent choice for wedding invitations or business cards.
Hemp Paper as Acid-Free Paper or Archival Paper
The finest archival papers cannot be made from tree pulp. Hemp paper has the capabilities of preserves itself very well. Other tree-based papers have both lignin and low acid content and so avoid how tree-based papers seem to quickly yellow and become brittle.
Hemp Paper for Artwork
Heavyweight and durable, hemp fibers make for a very strong, yet soft canvas. You consider that the word canvas derived from the word cannabis. Hemp papers durability compares with the finest linen used for the same purposes and usually sold off-white and un-primed. Hemp papers are good for making a fine, long-lasting medium for prints and posters.
Hemp Paper for Filters
Hemp paper is used to make many kinds of filters like coffee filters, oil filters, and vacuum cleaner bags. The filter papers made from very small filaments, which allow liquids to pass through and solids to trapped in it. Hemp paper filters also absorb compounds that metal screen filters cannot, they are healthier and cleaner.
Hemp Paper for Tea Bags
If we go into past, the tea bags are hand sewn in fabric sacks, after some development and research they start using paper. Other filters like, tea bags need to be porous and maintain integrity when wet. Tea bags usually made from blends, including wood fibers, natural fibers like hemp and sometimes plastic polymers. Hemp paper tea bags are available.
Hemp Paper for Hygienic Products
Hemp papers high tear and break resistance properties are useful in this specialty use. High absorption, antibacterial properties, and hypo-allergenic characteristics make hemp fibers very useful and non-irritating to sensitive parts of the body.
Hemp Paper for Banknotes
Due to the strong quality of hemp fibers the hemp paper traditionally has been used to add strength to paper money. That has to hold up to frequent handling, folding, and a lot of movement from hand to hand. The average life of a banknote is from 2 to 3 years. Nowadays more countries are switching to novel polymers to incorporate novel security features in currency better.
The hemp plant, which was historically cultivated for its fiber-based qualities by farmers for papermaking. The first sheets of hemp paper were formed in China nearly 2,000 years ago from pulverized fishing nets and rags containing hemp fiber.
Benefits of Hemp Paper
• The 1 acre of hemp can produce as much hemp paper as 4-10 acres of trees over a 20-year cycle.
• The hemp stalks grow only in 4 months, whereas trees take up to 20 years to grow.
• The hemp has a higher concentration of cellulose than wood, the principal ingredient in papermaking.
• The hemp has lower lignin content than wood. Hemp contains 5 to 24% lignin whereas wood has 20 to 35%. Hemp paper is more durable than other papers.
• Hemp paper not easily goes yellow, crack, or deteriorate like tree-based papers.
• Hemp paper can help sustainability efforts to reduce deforestation to save nature.
Can we make Hemp Paper at Home?
The hemp plant is easy to grow; it is also an eco-friendly alternative to paper. The hemp fibers cultivated from the stems of hemp plants are among the strongest plant fibers from which we can make hemp paper and other textiles. The process of making paper from hemp plant is similar to traditional paper making.
You can make the paper by breaking the fibers into a slurry pulp and molding them. Making hemp paper isn’t a difficult job it needs some practice, the paper is fairly delicate until it has been pressed and dried.
Things you need to Make Hemp Paper
|· Hemp Fiber
|· Stock Pot
|· Soda Ash
|· Storage Container
|· Blotter Paper
|· Wool Fabric
1) You need to fill a stock pot up with enough water. Soak the hemp fiber into that pot overnight to prepare it. Use a pot large enough that can hold the hemp fibers and enough water to cover the fiber.
2) Now you Add soda ash to the pot of water and hemp fibers. Mix the solution with a spoon until all soda ash blended into the water. Use the instructions by the directions on the soda ash container to ensure the proper soda ash to water ratio.
3) Now you need a stove, place the stock pot on the stove and simmer for 4 hours. Allow to cool down it.
4) Strain and rinse the fibers into a mesh strainer.
5) Now remove hemp fiber from soda ash solution and place in a strainer over a sink to rinse with clean water.
6) Now break down the fibers by pulling the hemp apart into some chunks smaller than your hand palm. Put these chunks into the beater and beat it into a pulp for almost 120 minutes. Now remove all the pulp from the beater and place it in a bucket.
7) Fill a storage container halfway up with clean water. Scoop the pulp into it using a small container to create a watered-down pulp slurry.
8) Place a wood board larger than your deckle, next to the container. Now take a blotter paper and wet it. Paste the blotter paper down on top of the wood board then layer felt on top of the blotter paper.
9) Now take the deckle mold and deckle together in your hands. Submerge both into the container of slurry liquid, by holding the deckle in this position and mold together. Now carefully lift out of the slurry keeping the deckle laying flat on the deckle as though it were laying on a table.
10) Hold the deckle flat over the container until most of the water has drained out. Now Gently move the deckle and mold from side to side to help drainage, making sure the pulp remains coat evenly across the top of the deckle.
11) Now it’s time to remove the mold. You need to flip the mold, pulp side down, on top of the felt table. You need your body weight to press around the edges of the deckle to remove any excess water in it.
12) Now press down on one side of the deckle. Press frame and briskly lift the opposite side of the frame to separate the deckle from the wet hemp paper you made.
13) Now putt cotton on top of the wet paper. Now you are in need of wool fabric sheet on top of the cotton interfacing with a wooden board. Keep in minded that your wooden boards are larger than the size of deckle.
14) Now you are in need to move the whole stack to a press for 10 minutes.
15) Now put another wood board and stack a piece of cardboard, a sheet of blotter paper and sheet of feeling on top in that order. Carefully remove a sheet of the wet hemp paper from the press and lay it on top of the felt. Now place the 2nd sheet of felt on top of the hemp paper, followed by another sheet of blotter paper, cardboard, and a wood board.
16) For weight press put 2 bricks on top to weigh the stack down. Allow drying for 2 days. Remove the bricks and disassemble the stack layer by layer to reveal your finished paper.
“Finally, your hemp paper is now ready to use.”
Some famous sources to buy the hemp paper are
Tree Free Hemp
Tree Free Hemp provides hemp-blended paper products, custom hemp printing services, and hemp packaging. This company is a great option for your next set of event flyers, business cards, and posters.
Green Field Paper Co.
Green Field Paper Company handmade paper has been crafted one sheet at a time here in California. We love their selections of journal and sketchbooks. They are producing the hemp paper since 1992.
Rawganique also offers a wide range of paper products. They offer paper with printing options along with notebooks that you can use in your daily life. They based in USA and Canada.