Is eating hemp our future?
Thu, 15 Nov 2012 2:10p.m.
By Imogen Crispe
Hemp growers and sellers want to dispel the public perception that hemp is marijuana, as hemp contains similar nutrients to fish oil and has numerous health benefits.
It was illegal to grow hemp in New Zealand until 12 years ago, when a ruling allowed people to get licences to grow the crop. Hemp oil is the only hemp food product allowed to be sold in New Zealand, but a law change is being considered to allow the sale of hemp seeds as a food.
New Zealand hemp oil seller Kim Renshaw says hemp oil is an up-and-coming health supplement in New Zealand and could help with fishing sustainability issues, as it is a good source of omega 3 and omega 6, for which people often take fish oil.
“Hemp seed oil is better than fish oil because it has five anti-inflammatory properties,” she says, and can help with skin conditions, arthritis, blood pressure and high-cholesterol.
According to Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) hemp seeds are a good source of protein, vitamins, minerals and unsaturated fatty acids and are legally allowed to be sold as food in Europe, Canada and the United States.
However there is still a stigma in New Zealand around hemp being related to an illegal drug, which Ms Renshaw says is slowing down the process of hemp becoming a widely-used health food.
“It’s down to a bit of a fear and a bit of old thought people hold about the correlation between hemp and marijuana.”
Midland Seeds in the South Island has been growing hemp since 2001, and director Andrew Davidson says that fear has also slowed down legislation to make it possible to sell other hemp food products such as hemp seeds.
To be grown in New Zealand, hemp crops must contain less than 0.3 percent THC, whereas the drug contains 3 percent to 22 percent. Currently hemp growers have to apply for a licence and have their background checked before they can grow it. Once in production it then has to be tested regularly to make sure the THC levels are low enough.
Mr Davidson says the only way to dispel the correlation between hemp and marijuana is education.
“We’re in a good position to inform people to make good health choices about hemp seed oil,” he says.
Ms Renshaw says her interest in hemp does not mean she is connected with the marijuana industry, as it is a completely separate issue.
“I’m not pro-marijuana, that’s not my fight at all.”
Both Ms Renshaw and Mr Davidson understand and agree that there does need to be restrictions on the growing of hemp because of the risk of high-THC marijuana being grown instead, but they want the sale of hemp seeds to be legalised.
FSANZ made an application to the Legislative and Governance Forum on Food Regulation to allow the sale of hulled hemp seeds, which will be considered next month. Mr Davidson says if it is approved, it will be great for the hemp food industry in New Zealand, because currently it is not very economical to grow hemp solely for the oil.
Hemp oil – an alternative to fish
Ms Renshaw first came across hemp oil when she questioned the origins of some fish oil tablets she was taking. She discovered that almost all fish oil comes from overseas and is often highly processed, and hemp oil was a good alternative.
“I had a taste and I loved it, and a love affair was born.”
Ms Renshaw says hemp oil is delicious, tastes quite nutty, and can be used as a salad dressing, in pesto, in bread or added to smoothies. But she doesn’t recommend cooking with it, as the heat decreases the nutritional value.
“Oil for nutritional value shouldn’t be heated… I don’t recommend cooking with it.”
To benefit from the nutrients, Ms Renshaw recommends eating at least a tablespoon of oil per day, and says it is great for vegetarians or others who need a source of omega 3 but don’t want to eat fish oil.
Ms Renshaw will be giving out free tastes of her Kimmithgone hemp oil at the Taste of Auckland festival, which started today and runs all weekend.
Post a Comment
Before commenting, please take the time to read our moderation guide
(Won't be published)
17/05/2013 5:04:25 p.m.
Yeah go Alex..! I will add, that I think its like 20 (20.3 actually) people a year die from a coffee (caffeine) overdose in NZ and 0 (ZERO) people a year die from a cannabis overdose worldwide!. However its not statistics like this that drives our law system.. it is? indeed Alex is right its the bankers.. oh well in my next life I am coming back as bankers (NOT).
High THC is what is required to cure cancer.. hmmm.. so lets connect the dots here.. our Government will only allow very low percentage of THC but will allow hemp to be grown.. if that does not smell fishy to you folks.. well read on... High THC equals low cancer and our laws equal low THC ergo high cancer. OK so if you still have not connected the dots here goes.. cancer is a business! many many people are profiting from it, its a business with business type interests looking after it (its just not possible to make the massive massive profits these companies make if anyone can grow what they need in their backyard). I know this may be hard to handle for many people but just think about it and in the mean time I urge people concerned about cancer to search the internet for 'cannabis cures cancer' or 'Medical Marijuana' there are some really well done videos on the topic now.
28/03/2013 1:11:36 p.m.
The bankers manufacture recessions and depressions to exert a rate of control over social and political structures. The bankers create and finance the wars on both sides of the conflicts. The bankers orchestrate femen, poverty and want. The bankers control the policies that control the media and the education system that is operated to maintain ignorance in the pubic so that they can be shown like sheep. The bankers loan to the drug money and keep drugs illegal. The bankers are the problem. You have been brainwashed for decades and they put the idea inside your heads to believe that the cannabis or hemp is a dangerous drug and should be illegal as it will certainly be abused. It's a plant that comes from nature. Nobody has the right to make laws restricting the access to natural resources. What we see today is called dictatorship and disinformation of the pubic. It has been proven by many studies that the plant has lots of health benefits and is absolutely not dangerous. In comparison a candy if abused can be more dangerous than cannabis.
22/03/2013 2:24:24 p.m.
Jillian Galloway wrote:
Hemp fields are the LAST place that cannabis growers would want to hide their plants. If cannabis growers were to put their plants inside a hemp field the cannabis plants would be fertilized by the hemp plants resulting in low-quality cannabis that's full of SEEDS. Cannabis consumers do NOT want cannabis that contains seeds!
It's ridiculous for farmers to be banned from growing industrial hemp just because politicians erroneously believe that cannabis growers would want to hide their plants inside hemp fields!!
15/11/2012 8:45:35 p.m.
CANABIS is the official name and sativa/indica are sub species names. The plant is most widely known as HEMP from regions who have farmed it for thousands of years. Marijuana or MARIHAUNA is a mexican slang term for tobacco and was a false name given to the "drug" both the CBDa' and THCa' which are not psychoactive in thier natural form but when burnt/smoked or cooked exist as CBD and THC which are and are from the Canabis/Hemp plant. The false name (marijuana/marihauna) came from american prohibition propagander which started in the 1930's and later became the drug war in the 1970's and has no real link to CANABIS/HEMP at all!Fact is in a world where canabis is legal wealth belongs to many and there in lies the problem. Again its all wrong because of pathetic selfish corruption!"Dispelling the myth that hemp is marijuana" YEAH RIGHT hahaha, only in america!
More than 50 New Zealanders die of asthma every year – about...
A visiting researcher says New Zealand needs to do more to h...
Cadbury is changing the shape and the size of its Dairy Milk...
A 15-year-old school student has developed a new test that c...
Tourists in Christchurch are being kicked out of the interna...
Copyright © 2013 MediaWorks TV. All Rights Reserved.