In the Kingdom of Bhutan, cannabis is so prolific that it is seen as a pest, and is fed to pigs rather than being used by humans for fibre or intoxicant purposes. Bhutan lacks a close connection with the plant. However, there is some evidence of traditional use, and use in modern times is increasing.
The Republic of Azerbaijan lies on the boundary dividing Europe from Asia, and is a crucial part of the traditional trafficking route that each year sees thousands of tons of hashish and heroin transported from Afghanistan and Pakistan on to Europe and Russia. Azerbaijan also produces a small quantity of cannabis and opium.
Innovations in hemp plastic technology are being released onto the market more frequently each year, and now even some of the largest companies (particularly car manufacturers) are incorporating hemp plastics into their products. There are various types of hemp plastic; here, we will briefly take you through how each is produced.
The Barcelona City Council has ordered the closure of no less than 49 cannabis clubs in the city. The reasons stated in the ordinance are that these clubs were encountering “coexistence issues with other businesses”, and “deficiencies in their way of functioning”.
Cannabis’ closest botanical cousin, the hop plant, has been an integral part of the beer-brewing process for hundreds, if not thousands of years. The hop plant is characterised by a tangy, fragrant taste and aroma, which is often compared to that of cannabis. Thus, some brewers now experiment with using cannabis along with hops.
Ancient China fascinates me. When Martijn and I were lucky enough to interview Robert Connell Clarke, I wanted to ask a thousand questions about his travels through the south-west of the Middle Kingdom, with its dreamlike landscape and pockets of culture that have remained essentially unchanged for hundreds, if not thousands, of years; remote enough to have so far escaped the eradication of all things ancient that began with Mao.
The French have relatively harsh drug laws compared with neighbouring European countries. However, in recent years attention has been paid to the successful harm reduction policies many of these neighbours are implementing, and various reforms have been made. In January 2014, France legislated to allow medical cannabis.
Algeria is a major transit point for drugs, particularly hashish produced in Morocco and destined for Europe. It is not a major producer or consumer of illicit drugs, although it appears that both production and consumption is on the increase. As well as hashish arriving from Morocco, increasing amounts of cannabis (and cocaine from South America) are trafficked into Algeria from West Africa. The bulk of the contraband leaving Algeria is destined to travel by sea to Europe, although a small proportion is also smuggled overland to Middle Eastern destinations.
The Islamic Republic of Iran has a long history associated with cannabis use, and large swathes of the population continue to use cannabis in the traditional manner. However, the present regime has been severely clamping down on drug trafficking in recent years, in response to an increase in heroin and opium addiction rates.
All of Europe is straining under the crisis. Well... maybe not all of Europe. An idea developed by some indomitable friends of hemp friends is flying straight in the face of the crisis. The first cannabis social clubs were established more than 10 years ago in Spain and today, every medium or large Spanish city centre has one. Even in Belgium, a legal cannabis social club by the name of "Trekt uw Plant" is in operation and in Uruguay, where cannabis has been made legal once again, this type of club is able to manoeuvre operate freely.
It’s my favourite altered state. I like to be high a lot. I also like to have an active social life, a fulfilling amount of creative activities, a job that throws me challenges I enjoy rising to, and a nice house filled with good food and clean laundry. These things that I like are not mutually incompatible, and I am not the only person to succeed in achieving all of the above, and more, whilst high.
It can be difficult to obtain an accurate record of the evolution of a plant species. Cannabis plants do not possess bony skeletons, which are often the sole remnant of an ancient animal species, and are comprised of vegetative matter that decomposes rapidly. Despite this, traces left behind in fossils and soil can yield valuable clues.
The benefits of juicing raw cannabis have been widely proclaimed over the last few years, but very little empirical data has been published that addresses the claims made by the various supporters of raw cannabis. However, the anecdotal evidence is mounting up, and many swear by it—but are there inherent risks, and if so, what?
For millennia, cannabis has been an integral part of Chinese industry and medicine—the longest recorded use of cannabis of any culture. It is now illegal in its narcotic form, although the hemp industry is legal and thriving. Chinese companies have also shown remarkable alacrity in obtaining cannabis patents in recent years.
Over thousands of years, humans have refined and perfected the methods to cultivate, harvest and process hemp, to obtain fibre for making garments and much more. Today, we have countless types and blends of textiles available to us, to suit all requirements and applications. But how is hemp fibre obtained and processed?
Greece has long been a cultural bridging point connecting Europe to Asia and Africa, and shares many traditional practices more often associated with North African and Arab culture. Greece has a long history of cannabis cultivation, and although present drug laws are strict, some degree of liberalisation is currently underway.
David Nutt is no stranger to both the drug prevention scene, and the cannabis activism scene. Among many other things, he is an eminent neuropsychopharmacologist from the United Kingdom who has dedicated his research to drugs. More specifically, his research focuses on how they affect the brain, and could possibly alleviate symptoms observed in depression sufferers, and addicts.
The Republic of Cameroon is a relatively stable and successful Central African nation, with good roads and infrastructure. However, a substantial proportion of its rural population depends on subsistence agriculture. As a result, cannabis appeals greatly to poor farmers as it commands a high price and can be transported with ease.