To gain a better insight into the cultivation of hemp for textiles (or long fiber hemp), the partners of the Hemp4Circularity project are talking to farmers. In France, Lin et Chanvre Bio is conducting this research in Normandy and Hauts-de-France.
A multinational investigation
The Hemp4Circularity project aims to integrate long hemp fiber into the textile chain of Northwestern Europe. That is why collecting practical data is an important step to broaden the understanding of hemp grown for textile applications.
In addition to the research conducted by Lin et Chanvre Bio, Valbiom, HOGENT and Inagro collect the same data in Belgium.
Delphy takes on this task in the Netherlands. The information will be used to analyze the climatic, technical and economic data of the cultivation of hemp for textiles in Northwestern Europe.
Data collection in the field
The survey focuses on a number of parameters, such as the soil properties of the plot, the rotation in which the hemp is grown and the cultivation process. The dates of all operations, such as sowing, harvesting, turning and baling, are recorded, as well as the amount of precipitation between May and July. In addition to this data, the emergence percentage is also questioned, the extent of the weed pressure and the presence of crows and pigeons that may be attracted to the seeds and seedlings.
All data is statistically processed and analysed by HOGENT. In this way, links are made between the course of the growing season and the yield and quality of the long hemp fiber.
A growing crop
The 2023 survey assessed the experience from the 2022 season and was carried out among 20 French hemp growers who together cultivated 66 hectares of long fiber hemp.
Although the survey for the 2023 harvest is already underway, it is expected that there will be more respondents. The area of long fiber hemp grew strongly in France. As a result, the data will be more extensive.
To support the growth
The purpose of this extensive data collection is to improve practical knowledge about textile hemp, identify stumbling blocks and inform and guide new growers.
Finally, the data from this survey will not only be used to support farmers who want to incorporate hemp into their rotation, but will also be used in the calculation of the PEF (or ‘Product Environment Footprint’) score. The PEF score expresses the influence of textile hemp on the environment.
Ultimately, the survey organized as part of the Hemp4Circularity project will help to shed valuable light on the reality of the hemp textile cultivation process, an essential step in the development of the value chain in Northwestern Europe.
Interested in the project?
Are you involved in hemp processing? Or are you interested in the potential of hemp in textiles? Contact us!
Many activities focused on long fiber hemp will take place in the coming months. The next training for farmers will take place in spring 2024. Workshops and conferences will be organized for students and textile brands, while a training course will enable textile sector actors to become ambassadors for long fiber hemp.