Why Grow Hemp
Hemp can improve the diversity and resiliency of your crop rotation. Decisions about when to plant hemp in the rotation should include disease pressure, soil fertility, and risk of contaminants. Remember that hemp, like many other plants, is a host to Sclerotinia (white mold) and Botrytis (grey mold). Hemp has a large taproot capable of taking up moisture and nutrients that may be inaccessible to other crops. The large taproot allows good water infiltration and soil health for subsequent crops.
If you’re looking for a crop that strongly competes with weeds, hemp should be your first choice. With proper management and fertility, hemp can easily out-compete most weeds after establishment.
Farmers who are faced with wet spring conditions that delay seeding operations can utilize growing hemp. When the optimum seeding time for other crops has passed, hemp is still a viable option. With shortening day length, hemp development shifts from vegetative to reproductive, resulting in rapid reproductive growth to compensate for a late seeding operation.
Full Plant Utilization
Hemp is a multipurpose plant. Hemp grain is a nutrient-dense product used in the food industry, and the hemp stalk contains bast fibre (used in the clothing and textile industry) and hurd (absorptive material for mulch, animal bedding, and building materials). CBD, CBG, and other cannabinoids are produced predominantly on flowering structures.
Demand for plant-based protein is growing, and hemp is strategically positioned to respond to this dynamic market. Hemp protein contains all 9 essential amino acids, making it one of the few complete plant sources of protein.
Consumer demand for hemp products is steadily growing with the increase of public awareness about the many benefits and uses of hemp products. Capitalizing on these market opportunities begins with a solid understanding of hemp production agronomy to supply a nutritional and safe food product to consumers.
Proven superior seed varieties
HGI is an international leader in developing improved hemp varieties with a special focus on grain and fibre markets. HGI varieties are AOSCA certified and adapted to different climates, latitudes, and production management systems (organic or conventional). These varieties have passed stringent Canadian and international Testing Standards for maintaining THC levels below 0.3%. As farmers have been involved in the testing our varieties from the start, improved harvestability is a key characteristic that growers appreciate during the combining season when time is of the essence.
Experienced breeders and agronomists
The HGI team of experienced breeders and agronomists have been researching and growing hemp for a combined 80 years — some since it was first legalized in Canada in 1998. The original germplasm imported from Europe produced towering plants selected primarily for the fibre market, but it was impractical for grain production. Recognizing that trying to grow dual purpose varieties (fibre and grain) would be a barrier to the growth of the hemp grain industry in Canada, HGI began to develop hemp grain varieties that farmers could grow and especially harvest using existing equipment on their farms. Since then, HGI has contributed significantly to the growth of the Canadian hemp grain industry through improved genetics, advanced seed technology, and a greater understanding of sound agronomic practices that help make industrial hemp a “farmer-friendly” crop.
We Are Partners for Farmers
Our relationship with our growers is of utmost importance. The two pillars upon which HGI was built are providing AOSCA certified pedigreed seeds that meet international standards and offering an agronomy package to help ensure success at the farm level. Most importantly, is that HGI was founded by farmers with a keen interest in making hemp a viable crop in Canada. These rural roots continue to guide HGI as the market grows and diversifies.
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