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Celebrate National CBD Day with some Hemp History / Photo: Kentucky Botanical Co.
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Celebrate National CBD Day with some Hemp History

Everywhere we look, it seems that CBD, medical marijuana, and cannabis in general is right there. Facebook, your neighbors, your family, and friends have all been talking about it. It sounds like the latest and greatest thing to hit the mainstream market. The truth is, though, that its been around forever--so, as we celebrate National CBD Day today, let's talk quickly about the history of this amazing plant!

Hemp's history goes back thousands of years. Its origins date all the way back to the beginning of agricultural movements, making it one of the world's oldest cultivated crops. Hemp fibers that were spun into pottery have been discovered dating back up to 10,000 years. Ancient cultures have used hemp seed and oil for food, the fiber has been woven into textiles & rope, and eventually it was used for paper.

In Kentucky, our hemp roots run deep. Early settlers brought hemp to the state to have a resource for textile production and the first recorded hemp crop was raised in Danville, KY in 1775. Cotton did not grow well in this area, but the climate and soil conditions in Kentucky served as a prime setting and hemp became the best option for fabric in our area. Between 1790 and 1800, settlements were transformed into attractive communities of fine homes, landed estates, and diverse manufacturing and mercantile enterprises — and hemp was regarded "the most certain crop and the most valuable commodity" produced in the region.

Kentucky's hemp production thrived and the state remained the nation's leading hemp producing state into the mid-19th century. In the 1850's, the industry began to decline until the Civil War, which brought American hemp production to a halt. The nation experienced a brief revival of hemp production during the first World War as foreign sources of fibers were cut off.

The "Reefer Madness" campaign of the 1930's deeply entwined with its cousin, marijuana. Despite its many differences, in 1937 Congress passed the Marijuana Tax Act which required farmers to pay a marijuana tax on their hemp crop, leaving farmers with very low profitability in a market with little to know outlet for sale. By 1970, hemp was federally banned when cannabis was classified as a Schedule 1 controlled substance.

A Resurgence: The 2018 Federal Farm Bill changed the game. It allowed for hemp cultivation broadly, not simply pilot programs for studying market interest in hemp-derived products. It allowed the transfer of hemp-derived products across state lines for commercial or other purposes. It also puts no restrictions on the sale, transport, or possession of hemp-derived products, so long as those items are produced in a manner consistent with the law.

The passing of the Farm Bill opened the door for the CBD industry to expand across the United States. This great plant that we were given that can feed you, house you, clothe you, and HEAL you was ours.

Where are we today? With so much talk and access to CBD products, picking a product and getting started can seem like a daunting task--overwhelming even. At Kentucky Botanical Co., we take a keep it simple approach. Start small and start with a product that you are comfortable with! There are a few basic questions that you can always ask yourself when narrowing it down.

What do you want to use it for?

For muscle and joint pain, topicals are amazing! For other issues like inflammation or stress, it helps to work from the outside in--think an edible like a gummy or an oil.

What types of products are available?

Topicals, Edibles, Oils are the most popular and are the best jumping off point!

Where is the product sourced?

Knowing where your hemp comes from is so important! Finding a reputable source is the best way to ensure a good, effective experience. A good rule of thumb is to avoid purchasing your CBD from gas stations or smoke shops.

Can I view your lab report?

Products should be 3rd party lab tested for quality and purity.

Work with a professional to help find the right dosage for your needs.

The best advice we can give you once you begin your journey is to be consistent! CBD products do not work in the same way that an Advil or Tylenol does and, for most people, take a few days to get into your system and start doing their job.

Christain Watt is the owner of Kentucky Botanical Company and Refilled. Kentucky Botanical Co. currently has three locations: 31 W Pike Street in Covington, 406 Fairfield Avenue in Bellevue, and 266 Main Street in Florence. You can keep up with them on Instagram and learn more on their website.

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