1. Clothing & Textile
The most obvious answer to “what is hemp used for” is usually clothing and textiles.
Hemp is incredibly durable, meaning the plant makes great shoes, jeans, and athletic clothing. However, luxury fashion designers have even started mixing it with silk for lingerie and other delicates.
2. Food & Drinks
Hemp oil that’s extracted from hemp seeds is both edible and highly nutritious, containing essential fatty acids. The whole seed is about 25% protein, and is a good source of calcium, iron, and omega-3s – all of which point to hemp's potential for food and as a dietary supplement.
3. Paper Products
Hemp has been used for paper for at least 2,000 years, but it accounts for only about 0.05% of the world’s paper production. Even though hemp is a far more renewable and sustainable source of paper, it’s several times more expensive because of its outdated manufacturing equipment.
4. Plastic Products
Henry Ford produced a prototype car made out of hemp & soy plastic in the early 1940s. Though it never went into production, it proves that hemp plastic can be a strong alternative to what we have right now. More recently hemp has been made into shower curtain liners, Blu Ray & DVD cases, and various other plastic products.
Like most vegetable oil you can take hemp oil and transform it into biodiesel. While there would be concerns about using land for fuel that could be used for food production, the biofuel process is certainly solid. As cellulosic ethanol technology becomes more commercially viable, there's no reason why you couldn't utilize hemp stalks or other leftovers as a source.
6. Building Supplies
Many people don’t know that hemp provides a variety of good building materials. From insulation to engineered building products like fiberboard and pressboard, to something called 'hempcrete' (hemp concrete), we have a real chance at building with more environmentally friendly versions of products we use today.