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What’s Hemp-ening in the Hudson Valley?

Today’s rain makes our pumpkin, corn and hemp fields very happy and did not stop the camp kids from splashing around in our irrigation demo. The thunderstorms are also welcome as long as they do not bring any hail which could damage our precious apples. You may have noticed some new crops filling the Hudson Valley this year. Are they tomatoes, maybe, but most likely you are seeing the newest trend in agriculture, medicine and cooking, hemp. The 2018 Farm Bill legalized growing industrial hemp federally including in NY State. Here are some answers to common questions about HEMP.

Can it get you high?

No, parents have nothing to fear if their child wants to pick their own hemp leaf at the farm and eat it. Hemp has a THC content that is less than .3% which means unlike it’s cousin, marijuana, it cannot get you high. So what’s the difference between hemp and marijuana because they look identical? Marijuana has a THC content of 5 to 20%, which means an average marijuana plant is 42 times stronger than the strongest strain of hemp.

Can I eat it?

Sure! You have probably seen hemp seeds or hearts alongside the chia and flax at your local market. These seeds are high in protein, amino acids, fatty acids, omega 3 and have a nutty flavor. Hemp seeds can be pressed into oil, milk or flour to be used in all sorts of recipes. Hemp flour is gluten free and contains Magnesium, Calcium, Sodium, Potassium, Iron, Zinc, Thiamine, Protein, Phosphorous, Folate, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin E and Vitamin B. The leaves are the newest launch on the restaurant scene, some of which may deliver to your home. Their smell and flavor will actually remind you of something like parsley or mint. The fresh leaves can be used in ice cream, drinks, salads, sautes or garnishes. Dried leaves can be made into a tea or spice blend.

What else is it used for?

This versatile plant is finding its way into so many industries it is almost easier to ask what it is not used for. A common place that you have seen and probably already purchased hemp is in textiles like bags, necklaces and clothing. Hemp is a biodegradable alternative to petroleum based plastic. Hemp paper is stronger than traditional tree paper, holds up to more folding and helps prevent deforestation. CBD (cannabidoil) is extracted from industrial hemp and used to treat a variety of illnesses. You can purchase it over the counter and online in a variety of forms including tinctures, capsules and other topical applications that are linked with anti-aging properties. Big chains like Walgreens, Urban Outfitters and Ulta Beauty are teaming up with companies to get USA CBD on shelves ASAP.

Where will you see hemp on the farm?

Sign up for our hemp tours where you can take pictures and explore this new exciting crop up close. Swing by the cafe and have your hotdog or chili topped with a fresh picked hemp leaf. Enjoy a fresh brewed glass of hemp iced tea homemade with from our hemp leaves. Take a hemp leaf tea bag home. Bring some fresh picked plants home which make a beautiful table centerpiece. Adult hoodies will also be available with our special logo graphically designed with an actual Hurds NY grown hemp leaf.

Fun Hemp Facts

The declaration of Independence was written on Hemp Paper

Levi jeans were originally made from hemp sailcloth (and rivets), for gold miners in California, who would fill their pockets with gold.

The US Government asked farmers to grow hemp in its “Hemp for Victory” campaign during WWII when Japan stopped all imports.

Hemp produces terpenes which attract pollinating insects.

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