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LONDON – A new study claims hemp is an economically and environmentally better bet than cotton when weighing up issues such as yields along with irrigation and fertiliser costs. Researchers claim the adoption of hemp enables a reduction in cost associated with agricultural activities of 78 per cent. “… our results suggest industrial hemp fibre is economically viable and has potential to be a more environmentally friendly alternative material than cotton within the textile industry,” claims the research.

Industrial hemp was recently approved for growth in the United States through the 2018 Farm Bill legislation. A hardy, drought resistant plant, hemp requires less fertilizer than other crops. However, processing hemp for use in apparel fibres has always proved hugely challenging, and Levi’s has to this end developed its own patented ‘cottonised hemp’ which is said to offer similar, soft qualities to cotton.

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