Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche


Formation of the Hemp Association of Tasmania

Industrial Hemp Association of Tasmania
Friday, 21 May 2010
Due to an increase in interest in industrial hemp products, the past few years have seen the
development and establishment of industrial hemp associations both globally and nationally.
Tasmania already has established industrial hemp growers, wholesalers, retailers, researchers and hemp
industry enthusiasts. These people have now come together to form the Industrial Hemp Association of
Tasmania. This is an important time for the function of such an association as it complements the
Industrial Hemp Association of Queensland, Northern Rivers (NSW) and the proposal to form a national
industrial hemp association. Concurrently, there is progress being made to form Victorian and NSW
industrial hemp associations.
Objectives of the new Tasmanian association include increasing the awareness hemp
products via this bona fide organisation, its business contacts and researchers. It will form a credible
information dissemination source for all interested users, producers and processors of hemp-based
products. It forms an identifiable and easily recognisable co-ordination centre which will also be used
for legislation modification and regulation management issues affecting the industry.
Recent large acreage research projects have indicated that industrial hemp can be grown successfully in
many locations with world parity yields of seed and fibre being achieved. The research into evaluating
suitable cultivars of industrial hemp at the Tasmanian Institute for Agricultural Research’s Forthside
Research Facility has proven that at least ten cultivars are suitable for Tasmanian conditions.
The inaugural meeting at Campbell Town in mid-May (hosted by Peter Simmul, Senior Horticulturalist
from the Tasmanian Institute of Agricultural Research and assisted by Lyn Stephenson of the newly
forming Industrial Hemp Association of Victoria) had a support group of 19 members who consisted of
growers, retailers, researchers, product developers and consumers.
The association will also promote advancements in deve industrial hemp industry as well as
offering primary producers more alternatives for crop production and rotation.
That, in turn, will enable more hemp raw product to be made available for downstream processing and
market opportunities. With the increased productivity will come more employment opportunities.
Industrial hemp is a crop that has been known and used man for over 10,000 years. Industrial hemp
can be used in all facets of our daily lives, making it a wholly sustainable agricultural solution to many
current and future ecological and economic problems. Anything from rope and string to building
products, soft furnishings and food can all be supplied from this versatile plant.
Throughout theWestern world, Industrial hemp is able to be consumed as a human food,
. The Australian Government has continued prohibition on use of industrial hemp as a food.
This is despite a recommendation from Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) in 2002.
This recommendation was made after a four year consultation and research process revealing the many
health and nutritional benefits of hemp seed products, including the correct balance of omegas for
human assimilation (superior to flax seed oil and fish oil).
except in
The nutritional benefits are not limited to humans. Soil health can be enhanced due to the complex tap
root system which assists in adding humus to the upper level soil profile as well as concentrating
disbursed nutrients in that area.
The inner core of the plant, known as the hurd, is an ideal animal bedding material, and excellent mulch
for domestic gardens, orchards and market gardens and is a major component in varied building
products internationally.
Due to increased production of industrial hemp in countries like China and India, Australia is finding
imported product easy to access. However this may not continue because those countries are rapidly
moving towards self-sufficiency. The association members have indicated they would like to see
Australia producing and processing home-grown crops with the eventual objective of substituting for
overseas imports. At the same time, Australia can benefit from the carbon sinking properties of this
versatile plant.
All enquiries to the Secretary:
Peter Simmul
Tasmanian Institute of Agricultural Research
Ph: (03) 6421 7694
Mob: 0408 578 102
Peter Simmul

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  1. Peter Bright

    December 27, 2010 at 9:26 am

    Having over the years become increasingly enraptured by the virtues of hemp, I’ve often wondered why the benefits of this entirely awesome plant are not well known or appreciated in Tasmania.

    The answer is here:


  2. Estelle Ross

    May 24, 2010 at 8:47 pm

    The formation of the Industrial Hemp Assoc of Tas. has come at just the right time and maybe during the Round Table negotiations mention could be made of the hemp industry as a viable alternative to those forestry workers who will be laid off

    Production of industrial hemp, trialled as a crop here in Tasmania since the 1990’s, should be ramped up thus ensuring Tasmanians, especially forestry workers, a new and lucrative source of wealth and jobs without compromising the environment. Hemp is an amazing plant; grown in rotation with legumes it can produce crops for fibre or seed. Due to its growth habit it needs little or no pesticides or herbicides and only moderate irrigation, perfect for dry- land farmers. Its potential for value adding is enormous as it can be utilised for not only paper but textiles, bio-fuel, plastics, animal feed, mulch, building materials, car parts and medicines. Researchers have discovered it can also be used to clean up sewage effluent, solve salinity problems and could be processed using converted saw mills.

    We could have a fantastic new green industry as little chemicals are needed and indeed hemp can be organically grown. Just imagine if we could utilise the Coates Patons Mill site once again for hemp processing or even better the now defunct Burnie Paper Mill, as in all the research I have done on the subject it is recommended that production facilities should be as close as possible to the areas where hemp is grown. As many farmers in the NW have been denied a market for their vegies due to Simplot and McCleans’ downturn the arable area of the NW would not only be ideal for hemp growing but a viable alternative source of income for local farmers.

  3. Frances Coghlan

    May 23, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    I applaud and encourage anyone who promotes hemp. I believe hemp to be the solution to just about ALL the problems this planet has accumulated. Number one being the forest industry. Imagine…….. 1 acre of hemp can supply the same amount of pulp as 4 acres of plantation trees (please correct me if this figure is off!) a crop that can have a quick rotation is far superior to an 8 – 10 year rotation. Then there is the clothing industry, oil industry, food industry, cosmetic industry, building industry, it is the crop of the past waiting to be the crop of now.

    Hopefully commonsense will pierce it’s way through the miasma of vested interests and reveal the pathway through to prosperity for farmers, foresters and manufacturers. Giving us a less poison oriented future.


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