Since the discovery of THC, the medical industry has been interested in studying the interactions between cannabinoids and the human endocannabinoid system (ECS). Synthetic cannabinoids (SCBs) have been developed to mimic the effects of natural cannabinoids, with thousands of compounds created. These chemicals have different structures and a higher affinity for ECS receptors, making them more potent than natural cannabinoids. They have been used in pharmacological studies and show potential for treating various medical conditions. However, they also have drawbacks such as unpredictable side effects and a higher risk for abuse.
New Frontier Data’s 2023 US Cannabis Report analyzes the American cannabis industry, highlighting state-level legalization and financial forecasts. The industry could reach $71 billion by 2030, driven by factors like new revenue streams and increased demand. Regulatory structures heavily influence market growth in states with both medical and adult-use programs.
Hemp (Cannabis with THC<0.3%) has a large variety of applications ranging from textile to building material. Did you know that hemp fibers are one of the strongest natural fibers? They are also sustainable and versatile! Harvested via a process called “retting”, they can have a high flexibility or be very stiff depending on the organization of the layers inside the fibers. Hemp fibers are very durable, breathable, hypoallergenic and able to absorb moisture. Some applications of hemp fibers include paper production, concrete-like material (hempcrete), textiles such as towels and clothes and insulation material. Cultivation of hemp is very sustainable because of the natural resistance of hemp to mold and other pests. Other parts of hemp also have many applications. Hemp oil can be used for cooking but also for biofuel production! Hemp seeds instead can be eaten raw or cooked and are rich in nutrients. Overall, hemp is a multi-purpose plant with a versatile use in industry, and we are recently rediscovering most of its application!
The legalization of cannabis has seen a strong uprise in the past 20 years all over the world. A recent poll of European citizens showed that 55% support legalization in Germany, France, the UK, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal and Switzerland, which is a contrast to a 2011 EU report that found that 59% of young people said cannabis should remain illegal. The media plays a crucial role in the shift in public perception, with framing of cannabis as a medicinal substance contributing to the pro-legalization viewpoint and a decrease in people seeing cannabis as harmful.