Hemp History

Three Kings Day

From historian Chris Bennett:“Today in Poland and Lithuania, and in former times also in Russia, on Christmas Eve when it is believed that the dead visit their families, a soup made of hemp seeds, called ‘semieniatka,’ is served for the dead souls to savor. In Latvia and the Ukraine, a dish made of hemp was … Continue reading "Three Kings Day" ...
The State of Hemp Foods in 1997

The State of Hemp Foods in 1997

Here is a clip from the 1997 documentary “The Hempen Road” by Dave Olson, featuring Eric Zima (Zima Foods) and Todd Dalotto (Hungry Bear). In 1997, the hempseed food industry was in its quaint infancy. “Hippies making food in their kitchens” would not be an uncharitable description for the most part. None of these were … Continue reading "The State of Hemp Foods in 1997" ...
The Original “Hemp Hearts”

The Original “Hemp Hearts”

June is Hemp History Month. You’ve heard of “Hemp Hearts,” but did you know it’s not a generic term but rather a brand name stolen from the original Hemp Hearts company, owned by Roger Snow in Alberta, Canada? Many of the same people appropriating his trademark first turned their sights to my Hemp Nut, calling … Continue reading "The Original “Hemp Hearts”" ...
The Birth of “Business = Activism”

The Birth of “Business = Activism”

In 1980 many vegetarian entrepreneurs had a collective vision inspired by the Book of Tofu (William Shurtleff and Akiko Aoyagi). Some of us went on to create Silk soymilk, Westbrae tofu, and TofuRella cheese alternative. Small village style tofu shops, thousands across the country just like Japan. Yes, we were naïve, yet we persisted. I … Continue reading "The Birth of “Business = Activism”" ...
Source of “Hemp = 4x More Fiber Than Trees”

Source of “Hemp = 4x More Fiber Than Trees”

Most of the hemp memes circulating are uncited so I investigate to see from whence they come, and thus their accuracy. That “hemp produces 300 gallons of oil and 8,000 pounds of seed per acre” one is the worst, it’s more like 35 gallons and 1,500 pounds if you’re lucky. I don’t ask for a … Continue reading "Source of “Hemp = 4x More Fiber Than Trees”" ...
Small Companies, Big Dreams

Small Companies, Big Dreams

In 1994 this article appeared in Food Business, a trade journal for the food industry with massive circulation. It discussed my approach and challenges to marketing foods made from tofu. It was published just months before I introduced my first hemp product, and got into my “virtual company” approach to business operations, namely, out-source all … Continue reading "Small Companies, Big Dreams" ...
Richard Rose’s Years at Hemp Industries Association (HIA)

Richard Rose’s Years at Hemp Industries Association (HIA)

Few know my history helping turn the Hemp Industries Association (HIA) into a credible trade group. I hold it accountable today because I feel a responsibility to keep it on the straight and narrow, like I did years ago. My work driving the interest in food was the first for it, skeptical from the start … Continue reading "Richard Rose’s Years at Hemp Industries Association (HIA)" ...
Richard Rose: a Leading Innovator Since 1986

Richard Rose: a Leading Innovator Since 1986

Long before pivoting to innovating in the hemp food segment, Richard Rose was infamous for innovating in the mainstream food segment. In Food & Beverage Marketing in December 1986, listed before the likes of Campbell Soup, Conagra, General Mills, and H.J. Heinz was Richard’s company Brightsong Foods, the only small food company and the only … Continue reading "Richard Rose: a Leading Innovator Since 1986" ...

Revelations from Congressional Testimony in the Hearings on the Marihuana Tax Act in 1937

These quotes are from Harry Anslinger, the man uber-racist FDR dispatched to put brown-skinned people in jail not for drugs, but for not having one certain little stamp proving they paid a tax; an economic crime. By 1937, many of today’s drug companies made hundreds of popular and efficacious medicines dispensed by pharmacists containing Cannabis … Continue reading "Revelations from Congressional Testimony in the Hearings on the Marihuana Tax Act in 1937" ...
Pricing for Problem Customers

Pricing for Problem Customers

When I was running fast-growing Rella Good Cheese Co. (#281 on the Inc. 500 in 1993, known then as “Sharon’s Finest”), I realized some wholesale customers were a delight and some were a total Pain In The Ass, yet they both were charged the same price. Those who were a hassle took more of our time and … Continue reading "Pricing for Problem Customers" ...

Obscure Historical Hemp References

Here are more Hemp citations found in academic literature that I commissioned in 1999 for my book The HempNut Health and Cookbook. The source was an agriculture database which is not online, with perhaps a million references. All were originally sourced by hand from libraries around the world for at least the past 45 years … Continue reading "Obscure Historical Hemp References" ...
My Forty Years Under FDA’s Thumb

My Forty Years Under FDA’s Thumb

I write a lot about FDA, and the things I say are admittedly not in the realm of Conventional Wisdom. See it here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. So then, why listen to me when it comes to FDA? I don’t know what you … Continue reading "My Forty Years Under FDA’s Thumb" ...

John Stahl on Hemp for Paper

Here’s a scene from Dave Olson’s 1997 documentary “The Hempen Road” featuring hemp pioneer John Stahl of Evanescent Press. He was planning on growing hemp for paper in Humboldt, and even installed a 12-foot fence and security lights to satisfy DEA. Local marijuana growers told him they wouldn’t let his first crop pollinate theirs because … Continue reading "John Stahl on Hemp for Paper" ...

INDUSTRIAL HEMP: GLOBAL MARKETS AND PRICES (1997)

Regarding INDUSTRIAL HEMP: GLOBAL MARKETS AND PRICES (1997) by Valerie L. Vantreese in the Department of Agricultural Economics at University of Kentucky. Many think China banned hemp cultivation sometime in the last century. I know they did not as I purchased hundreds of tons of seed from them in those years. Here is confirmation: “China … Continue reading "INDUSTRIAL HEMP: GLOBAL MARKETS AND PRICES (1997)" ...

Henry Ford: Passion for Plant-based Foods

I can't help but think that if Henry Ford realized just how nutritious the seed of hemp is, he would have done what I did and pivot from using soybean to hempseed to make foods like milk and ice cream. ...
Hempy ThanksLiving

Hempy ThanksLiving

For millennia people have been eating hempseed, and even now a billion people eat it weekly (China). A vegan source of complete protein and omega-3, it tastes great raw. ...
Hemp Textiles OG: Barbara Filippone

Hemp Textiles OG: Barbara Filippone

From EnviroTextiles about the hemp textiles OG, Barbara Filippone: “June is Hemp History Month, and we celebrate one of the greatest natural fiber experts in the world. Barbara Filippone was a famous fashion designer working with natural fibers in India back in the 1980’s. Her infamous multimillion dollar design on launch was the “Godey skirt” … Continue reading "Hemp Textiles OG: Barbara Filippone" ...
Hemp Flower Products: 12,000 Years of Safe Continuous Use Around The World

Hemp Flower Products: 12,000 Years of Safe Continuous Use Around The World

Here’s why Hemp Flower Products should be classified as a food ingredient existing before October 1994, for the purposes of DSHEA to FDA. This submission is a stakeholder comment to your “Development of a List of Pre-DSHEA Dietary Ingredients” issue. My name is Richard Rose and I’m an award-winning food industry professional of 37 years … Continue reading "Hemp Flower Products: 12,000 Years of Safe Continuous Use Around The World" ...
Hand of God, LLC

Hand of God, LLC

Product businesses are the hardest to scale up and grow fast, with inventory and accounts receivable eating cash faster than you can make and sell it. Perishable foods are even harder, with deductions frequently taken for spoilage and much higher storage and transportation costs. So then how does one become the 281st fastest-growing small business … Continue reading "Hand of God, LLC" ...

Fiber Wars: The Twenties and the Rise of Chemurgy

June is Hemp History Month. Fiber Wars Chapter 6 The Twenties and the Rise of Chemurgy “The cause celebre of the Chemurgy Movement was ethanol fuels made from the fermentation of grain. In his analysis of the their initial interaction, David Wright described the reception of the chemurgists by the USDA as enthusiastic. But heavy … Continue reading "Fiber Wars: The Twenties and the Rise of Chemurgy" ...
Economics of Shelling Hempseed

Economics of Shelling Hempseed

The future of Hemp is food. That’s not to say fiber doesn’t have a role to play, as where there is seed there is fiber. It’s a symbiotic relationship, a dual crop with two income streams. But food has more of a social imperative than walls of houses or animal bedding. How often do you … Continue reading "Economics of Shelling Hempseed" ...

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