A durable and hardy resource, hemp is used in a broad spectrum of products: paper, insulation, textiles, rope, shoes, personal care products, food, and even biofuel. Most parts of the hemp plants can be issued commercially, including the seeds, fibers, and oil. One of the leading organic products derived from hemp is Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, which has seen skyrocketing sales fueled by claims of its health benefits. In addition, there is a growing market for psychoactive cannabis, a natural product of the hemp plant.
Hemp Cultivation and Production
The hemp plant is an annual grown from seed. Preferred soils and climates are similar to those for commercial corn production.
Because almost all parts of the hemp plant can be used commercially, a wide variety of processing procedures may be used. Processing methods differ depending on whether the seed, fiber, oil, flower, or combination is the desired commercial outcome.
Processing for hemp fiber includes the following steps:
- The plant stalks are retted, by which moisture and microbes work in tandem to break down the raw stalks into a more fibrous consistency.
- Several retting methods can be used.
- A variety of actions, including decortication, hackling, spinning, and bailing, are commonly involved.
Processing hemp seeds incorporates several steps as well: threshing, sieving, classifying, and gravity separation.
Hemp oil is produced by cold pressing the hemp seeds, much like olive oil is produced. Prepared seed is then loaded into hoppers that feed into the cold pressers. Following that, filtration of the pressed oil is generally necessary.
Prater Industries and Its Role in Hemp Processing
Prater Industries provides the machines, tools, and expertise needed for any commercial hemp processing enterprise. Prater’s lineup of durable and high-quality machines includes:
Prater is well known for working together with our customers, from the largest of industrial concerns to small entrepreneurial startups. Because of its expertise and commitment to quality, Prater can design and build a custom machine for your particular hemp-processing requirements. Contact us to get started.