Hemp is a plant species grown as a crop for the industrial use of its derived products. Hemp is one of the oldest plants in the world and can be grown in a variety of different climates. It naturally does not require a pesticide and can keep pests away from plants around it even months after the hemp has been harvested. It can be successful in many different types of soil and can mature in about 3-4 months.

Hemp is native to Central Asia and has been used for its fiber for thousands of years. Ancient civilizations in Asia and Europe utilized hemp for rope, paper, clothing, and other fibrous uses. Ancient China even made hemp shoes! In the middle ages, hemp began its use as a dietary supplement for its fiber. Hemp became especially popular and useful during the colonial era for shipbuilding and naval uses. Hemp is also one of the fastest growing plants, going from seed to harvest in less than half a year. This makes it far more rapidly renewable than wood and cotton fiber. The entire hemp crop is valuable, from its inner woody core, called hurd, shive or bast, to its fiber, to its seeds. Modern applications of hemp in everyday products include hemp oils, foods, alcohols, animal bedding, cosmetics, milk, clothing, and backpacks. Even hemp sunscreen has emerged onto the market as a hot commodity.

Hemp is a variation of the Cannabis sativa species of plant. While the psychoactive drug marijuana is the same species of plant, they are as similar as two breeds of dogs are, such as German shepherds to chihuahuas. The industrial hemp seeds used by Sunstrand have been bred for producing high-quality natural bio-materials. Hemp has less than 0.3% THC, the psychoactive component of marijuana; according to the Ministry of Hemp, “Your lungs will fail before your brain attains any high from smoking industrial hemp.”

Hemp In America

Hemp is truly a part of American history. The early colonies, including Plymouth and Richmond, grew hemp as a main cash crop. Hemp supplies were integral to Revolutionary War effort, and George Washington himself grew hemp at Mount Vernon and was one of the main arguers for increased hemp production. Many Founding Fathers including Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe also farmed hemp, as hemp was a main cash crop for southern states for centuries. During World War II, hemp was used extensively, especially by the government to make uniforms, canvas, and rope. The film Hemp for Victory encouraged farmers to grow as much hemp as possible as a necessary aid for the war effort. After the war, however, hemp became a controlled substance due to its association with marijuana. In recent decades, regulation has been relaxed and the legalization of industrial hemp has sparked a wildfire of an industry.

In 2015, the hemp industry estimated $600 million in annual sales of hemp products, with year on year growth. According to Forbes magazine, in 3 years it will reach $1 billion. Kentucky has been one of the pioneer states of industrial hemp production in the modern day, along with Oregon, Colorado, California, and New York. Kentucky has been a key hemp producer since colonial times, and for World War II production stepped up to another level where it remained as the countries primary producer.  As of early 2018, 34 states have passed legislation for industrial hemp pilot programs, often partnering with universities. Congress continues to deliberate on expanding hemp production. In March 2018, Senator Mitch McConnell proposed the Hemp Farming Act of 2018 which would remove hemp from the controlled substances list and recognize it as a normal crop amongst farmers. In fact, before hemp was ruled illegal it was, in fact, the main cash crop in America. If this act is indeed passed, hemp has the potential to take that spot once again. As of June 2018, the Farming Committee of the Senate has passed the Hemp Farming Act and the full Senate vote will commence shortly.

Sunstrand’s Unique Approach to Hemp

Sunstrand sources its seeds to be the gold standard for industrial hemp worldwide. Our crops comply with all DEA regulations and are grown and harvested by local farmers here in America, supporting the community and agricultural base. We are devoted to our local farmers and provide them with a unique opportunity to generate revenues for environmental markets with price premiums by utilizing acres that have not been generating revenue. Our headquarters are in Louisville, Kentucky, a historically important world hemp producer. We take the hemp crops and separate them into the hurd and the fiber, then apply each to various industries.

Our hurd, due to its qualities including low density and high absorbency, is a prime biofiller for composites such as plastics, a key component of hempcrete and can be made into our CoreBoard building materials. Also, larger size hurd particles are ideal for gardening, spray up molding, and animal bedding, whether that be for the thoroughbred horses at Churchill Downs to a small guinea pig cage.

Our fiber is used to make nonwoven mats, such as natural insulation, acoustic mats, filters, natural house wrap, and car panels. We are constantly innovating, and discovering new uses for our products, in an effort to make more and more everyday items both sustainable and efficient through Sunstrand. Our products have applications in the construction, automotive, electrical and electronics, cosmetics, recreation, oil & gas, and various other industries.

Hemp, like all of our products, is rapidly-renewable, recyclable, and biodegradable. Our SUNstainability Promise guarantees quality and ethical, environmentally consciously sourced products.

Sunstrand Hemp Materials

Product ID Material Type Feedstock Avg Size  
HH999 Core Hemp .15 mm Download Technical Data Sheet
HH060 Core Hemp .6 mm Download Technical Data Sheet
HH030 Core Hemp 1 mm Download Technical Data Sheet
HH008 Core Hemp 4-5 mm premium Download Technical Data Sheet
HH000 Core Hemp 4-5 mm standard Download Technical Data Sheet
FH100 Fiber Hemp 3.5 inch
FH040 Fiber Hemp 2 inch Download Technical Data Sheet
FH006 Fiber Hemp .25 inch Download Technical Data Sheet