Hemp x marijuana: Know how to differentiate

Did you know that hemp and cannabis are different? Each of them has special characteristics and distinct uses, from medications, flowers that we love so much, food, fiber. Here, we tell you more!

Did you know that the same species of plant can offer so many potentials? From medication, food, fiber for the most diverse purposes, a renewable fuel source and even concrete. Magical, isn’t it? We bet you’ve heard about hemp out there, and you probably related it to cannabis. But, although they come from the same species of plant, they have little in common, mainly in terms of legality, purpose and research. Some of the bigger differences of these plants are about their properties as leaves, methods of planting and use.

To show you more about this subject, we will explain these differences to you, as well as the importance of each of them in various contexts. Let’s start?

Outdoor cannabis plant
Outdoor cannabis plant

What is hemp and what is cannabis?

Cannabis refers to a plant genus that has three species: indica, sativa and ruderalis. Hemp is not a different species of the cannabis plant – it is just a variety that contains 0.3% or less of THC content (by dry weight).

Take a look at the main differences:

The classifications were created to differentiate intoxicating cannabis from non-intoxicating cannabis. Hemp is a sativa species, while marijuana can be sativa, indica or ruderalis. That is, it is a variety that does not get you high! In the United States, unlike cannabis, it is federally legal. It is a very recent legalization, from 2018, and it shows, little by little, its limitations.

The problem is: how do you make sure that the hemp you plant will have less than 0.3% THC? There are varying conditions, such as soil, sunlight and irrigation, which can affect the plant and increase this rate. That way, it would be unusable under American law, leaving farmers destitute. This is one of those small problems that the law does not provide for. In the country, even a truck driver was arrested for transporting hemp, when the police classified it as cannabis, even with certifications from the responsible company.

Each country has a different policy. There are places, like Denmark, that it is legal for the production of CBD – which is strictly controlled by prescription. In Brazil, it is a similar issue – only hemp is not allowed. Everything that comes from it is imported from producing countries.

What is the difference between hemp and cannabis CBD?

CBD products from hemp, such as oils and tinctures, are federally legal in the United States, as long as they comply with other applicable laws. That said, certain places have their own legislation and regulations on CBD oil. Generally, CBD derived from hemp represents the best option legally, worldwide speaking. But they have some differences, especially in the way they are made.

Cannabis represents a richer source of cannabinoids and terpenes than industrial hemp, as it contains significantly more resin (mainly in the trichome heads, which is where the concentrates are extracted from). Hemp contains resin in flowers and leaves too, but much less. Most industrial hemp growers need to grow large amounts of hemp to produce CBD oil, although more CBD-rich hemp species are now being grown.

Hemp seed and your health

Did you know that hemp, after all, is highly nutritious? Its seeds do not have THC, but rather a high fiber content, which induce satiety and also balance intestinal function, stimulating a natural detox, so to speak.

And it is far from just that: hemp seeds contain omega 6 and omega 3, in the exact proportion to compensate for the main imbalance of the contemporary diet. These natural fats help to regulate our cholesterol, lower blood triglycerides and improve blood pressure. Twenty grams (a dessert spoon) of hemp seeds per day corresponds to 100g of roasted salmon.

These little ones also contain gamma linolenic acid, which has anti-inflammatory effects and relieves the symptoms of stress, regulating mood and the feeling of well-being. They are still in great demand for the proteins they offer – essential for building and maintaining muscle mass, hair, skin and nail health.

Its richness in minerals important for bone and muscle health is impressive, in addition to containing bioactive phytosterol compounds, which help in the prevention of coronary heart disease, some types of cancer and chronic degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

Yes, that’s a LOT!

Historical curiosities about the plant:

  • As we already said, hemp is used for many things! Interestingly, this practice dates back to ancient times – it is estimated that it has been used for more than 10,000 years, and was the first first plant cultivated by humans, with agricultural techniques, for different uses.

  • Even the history of Brazil is tied to this herb: the strings of Pedro Álvares Cabral’s ship were made of it!

  • Romans and Greeks, of great civilizations whose inventions walk with us until today, used it for the manufacture of fabrics, papers, ropes, toothpicks and oil. The use of hemp to make ship ropes and sails is also mentioned. The material was essential for the expansion of diverse peoples.

  • The first printed bible, made by the German Johannes Gutemberg, was produced on hemp paper. It was she who allowed the dissemination of information, and many see this moment as the birth of the modern press.

Other uses of hemp

This plant is incredible not only for its results, but also for its sustainable potential. Easy to cultivate, it helps with air quality, captures carbon footprints and is still miraculous in recovering contaminated soil – even with heavy metals. However, the plant that is used to absorb soil pollutants cannot be reused for the food or cosmetics industry. After all, all of this will end up inside of us.

Speaking of cosmetics: hemp oil has been increasingly explored for this purpose. In addition to many beneficial properties for the skin, such as regulating oiliness and fighting inflammation, it can be a great ally to the environment. That’s why some sustainable brands are already looking for ways to replace palm oil with hemp. This is wonderful news for anyone fighting for environmental reasons, since the palm oil industry is responsible for the degradation of biomes, deforestation and one of the greatest agents for the extinction of orangutans.

Yes, guys. It’s really bad.

Meanwhile, hemp can be used as a whole: seeds, stem, leaves, for the most varied products. When your cultivation respects the norms, it can grow and develop anywhere, being an inexpensive and much more ecological solution.

Big brands are joining the movement

We give all the support to all brands that want to make their business better, both for people and for the environment. And it’s very interesting to see how this care, due to the increasing demand of the population, is making a difference – and will only grow. An example is AVON, which a few months ago launched its first CBD oil (abroad) and its first Brazilian line with hemp seed oil.

The British brand The Body Shop has also been exploring the benefits of hemp for years, and Blazing Beauty, wonderfully Brazilian, too!

We believe that cannabis and hemp can change the world, making it a much more sustainable and beautiful environment. That’s why we fight so hard for this little plant: so that, one day, it gets rid of its stigmas and can be fully utilized by everyone who needs it.

Did you like to know all this? Stay tuned here on the blog, we have already come back with even more information for you.


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