The Indian hemp industry is expected to grow to $500 - 700 million in the next few years!
Hemp Industry Overview
Hemp is a naturally strong fiber that has been cultivated for centuries. For fiber, seed, and oil, hemp crops are grown widely. The medicinal properties of Hemp have been known for ages. It has been cultivated in the Himalayan regions for more than 12000 years. It has both economic and nutritional significance. Due to its various health benefits, the hemp market has grown immensely. And to our surprise, hemp seeds and oil constitute the hemp business's central market. Hemp, being versatile, is used in food, beverages, food supplements, fabric, and paints. Hemp is also used for innovative products like hempcrete, hemp paper, and biofuel in recent years. The pandemic gave a boom to the health industry. Everyone these days is concerned about their health and lifestyle. To stay fit, people started looking for information regarding nutrition, food, and therapeutic products to help anxiety, pain relief, and natural solutions for mind, body, and soul problems.
Why is Hemp getting Popular?
Every part of the plant can be used for food (nutrient-dense seeds and oils), medicinal use, fiber, paper, fuel, construction (hempcrete), animal food, bedding, even as a biodegradable alternative to plastic. With an increase in demand for various personal care products, protein supplements, cosmetics, and nutritious health products, industrial Hemp is boosting market growth and expanding the market both domestically and internationally. India, in the foreseen, will be able to catch up with other countries like China for exporting hemp products internationally. It can also be an alternative revenue for Indian farmers with eco-friendly products, which are also sustainable for the environment. The growing use of hemp seed oil leads to the growth of Hemp in India. Hemp seeds are used to produce hemp oil consumed directly and used in cosmetics, personal care products, cosmetics, food, and beverages. It prevents mental health conditions like anxiety, depression, bone pain, skin and hair-related problems. Not only this, since Hemp is a renewable source of material, it is helpful in many diversified industries. Due to its long, robust fibers are majorly used in textile, pulp, and paper industries. It's also used in construction, animal bedding, automobile, furniture, agriculture, biofuels, and bioplastics.
Is it a Profitable Industry?
Hemp is in higher demand as it is a solid fiber and seed oil source. India will become one of Hemp's largest producers and exporters in the foreseeable future as it is now for cotton. Industrial Hemp can also be a reliable and profitable source of income for Indian farmers. The government has started the cultivation of Hemp for several purposes, such as for manufacturing cosmetics, textile, and medicines. It is a fact that the farmers can earn up to rupees twenty thousand per acre by cultivating hemp crops. In India, Uttarakhand became the first state to cultivate hemp crops in July 2018. After that, many states started the cultivation of hemp crops like Odisha, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Rajasthan. Gradually, Hemp is turning out to be an emerging opportunity for India.
Dietary Benefits of Hemp
Hemp has a bundle of nutrition, and it can be considered a superfood. So let's take a look at the dietary benefits of Hemp.
Nutritious Hemp: Hemp seeds are an excellent protein source, and they contain fewer carbohydrates. It is also a great source of essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin E, vitamin C, B12, Potassium, phosphorus, zinc, magnesium. Hemp seeds can be consumed raw, cooked, or roasted. It contains GLA, which is hard to find and is known to prevent inflammation and balance body hormones.
Heart Health: Hemp seeds reduce the risk of heart disease as it keeps cholesterol and blood sugar at a healthy level. It is also known to improve your blood circulation in the body. These nutritious seeds are rich in essential amino acid, which plays a significant role in producing nitric oxide in the body. This chemical is known to dilate the blood vessels and make them relax. All, in turn, helps to lower blood pressure and reduces your risk of heart diseases.
Aids Digestion: As hemp seeds are packed with antioxidants and rich fiber, it helps the digestive system function properly and boosts daily energy. Your body requires an adequate amount of fiber daily as it is an essential part of your body to keep your digestive health better and prevent constipation. Hemp contains both soluble and insoluble fiber. As both kinds of fiber are necessary for keeping your digestive tract healthy, consuming Hemp will be good for your digestion.
Pain Reliever: Hemp seeds have therapeutic properties that help relieve inflammation in the body. As a result, it relieves joint pain, arthritis, and general body aches. Hemp seed oil is known to be beneficial in reducing pain and symptoms of PMS too. A gentle massage of this oil instantly gives soothing and relief to the muscles.
Skin Health: Hemp seed oil is rich in omega 3, 6, and 9. This oil can be both consumed directly or applied to the skin. It is often used in cosmetic products as it can penetrate through layers of skin to promote skin health and cell growth. Hemp seed oil is excellent for both oily and dry skin. It is also known to repair and moisturize dry and damaged skin.
Growth of Hemp in India
India being a tropical country, has favorable climate conditions to grow Hemp, which aids in the desired production of Hemp crop, seed yield, and increased fiber density with minimal efforts. The hemp plant is a sustainable crop to cultivate. It is used for multiple purposes, mainly as a biodegradable alternative to plastic. The best part about cultivating Hemp is that it is entirely organic. Industrial Hemp is grown without using any chemicals, pesticides, or herbicides. This plant has a short summer crop cycle. For hemp cultivation, it requires half the amount of water as cotton. Furthermore, farmers use Hemp for crop rotation to eliminate pesticides effects, soil remediation, weeding fields, and bio-absorption of heavy metals and contaminants. Indian consumers are getting more aware of the benefits of Hemp nowadays. That has led to increasing the cultivation of Hemp in many parts of the country. This adverse increase in demand for Hemp is expected to drive its market to a new height in India. The hemp industry has faced a lot of challenges in marketing its products. Hemp products were restricted in India by social platforms due to a lack of clarity. FSSAI and the Ministry of Ayush helped clarify everyone's mind about Hemp being a superfood nutritional plant. Since 2019, over 50 firms have registered with the word ‘hemp’ in their names, and the number of registered start-ups rose from eight to over 100 in the last 18months. According to current players, the hemp industry in India is worth $2 - 3 million at present. The global hemp industry was estimated at $4.71 billion in 2019, according to the Industrial Hemp Market Size, Share And Trends Analysis report published in February 2020 by US-based Grand View Research. The market is driven by the growing demand for hemp oil and fibers in the automotive, construction, food and beverage, personal care and textile industries, especially in emerging regions such as the Asia Pacific, the report states. The hemp industry is expected to be the future now. It has turned out to be this super wonder plant with several nutritional benefits and is used in other products.