[GROWING & CULTIVATION]
Hemp is an annual plant that grows from a seed in many different climates. Because of its unique nature, hemp can easily be grown organically. The plant has a deep root system that helps to prevent soil erosion, removes toxins, provides a disease break, and aerates the soil to the benefit of future crops. It requires no pesticides to aid in its growth, as it is naturally pest resistant and requires no herbicides because it is grown so densely. There are two products to be harvested - the hemp fiber and the hemp seeds.
The hemp fiber is one of the most valuable parts of the hemp plant and is commonly referred
to as “bast”, meaning that it grows as a stalk from the ground. The hemp bast fiber is known for its superior strength, durability and biodegradable properties. They are longer, stronger, more absorbent and more mildewresistant than cotton. Hemp fiber also has insulative qualities that allow wearers to stay cool in summer and warm in the winter.
[PROCESS: RETTING - DECORTICATION - WASHING - COMBINING - SPINNING]
Once cut, the stalks are left in the field to `ret’ to loosen the fibers. Retting is a natural process that is triggered by dew that falls on the crop each morning. Once this process is complete (dry), the stalks are collected and sent for decortication - the separation of long outer fibers and short inner fibers. The long fibres are then collected for washing to break down the glues that bond the fibers together. Once these fibers are separated, washed and treated, they are sent through a machine that smooths and aligns the fibres to prepare them for spinning. Several strands of fibre are then sent through the spinning machine and are twisted together to create a single length of yarn.