Cannabis: Five Things You Didn’t Know
Although our primary focus is CBD, we know a lot of our customers want to learn more about cannabis, particularly Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the chemical cousin of CBD that provides the majority of marijuana’s psychoactive effects.
There’s no question, THC is the world’s most famous cannabinoid. Steeped in history, marijuana has been used medicinally long before the days of prohibition. As cannabis is slowly legalised around the world, and CBD becomes more popular month on month, we wanted to share some facts about cannabis that you probably didn’t already know.
1. Marijuana has been used for at least 12,000 years.
The history of cannabis use amongst humans stretches back to at least 10,000 BC, which means that marijuana was one of the first crops cultivated in human history. Our ancestors started to grow hemp and cannabis crops around the same period that they began grinding barley and wheat in the Zagros Mountains of Iran.
Archaeologists have discovered traces of burnt marijuana seeds in ancient Siberian burial plots that date back over 5,000 years. Additionally, the Chinese used cannabis as part of their early herbal medicines on a routine basis. Back in 2,337 BC, Chinese Emperor Shen Nung is said to have used cannabis and wrote al about the health benefits that it provided.
Cannabis reached Southern Asia around 1,500 BC, ending up in the Middle East at roughly the same time. Over in the USA, colonial farmers in Virginia, Massachusetts, and Connecticut were legally required to cultivate hemp during the 16th century. That said, marijuana use didn’t start to spread through the USA until early in the 20th century. It was during this period, after thousands of years of usage across the world, that cannabis was given a bad reputation and criminalised, starting in 1913 in Maine, Wyoming, and California.
2. The founding father’s of America may have cultivated cannabis
Although not actively promoted in most history classes, rumours suggest that many U.S. politicians grew hemp during America’s early colonisation. These wealthy men grew hemp, which was often used for clothing and textiles. Interestingly, this is how Asian countries used hemp back in ancient times.
Depending on what historical sources you believe, some people suggest that these politicians were also smoking their crops. Meaning that in America’s earliest years, the very people that founded the nation could have been enjoying a recreational smoke of hemp.
Although the high associated with smoking hemp is not known for pleasant moods and munchies, it can alter the consciousness of the user. Indeed, Thomas Jefferson is rumoured to have said:
“Some of my finest hours have been spent on my back veranda smoking hemp and observing as far as the eye can see.”
Sources also suggest that the ‘Declaration of Independence’ was written on hemp parchment.
3. In certain U.S. cities, marijuana dispensaries outnumber McDonald’s and Starbucks combined.
In cities like Denver, Colorado, there seems to be a marijuana dispensary on every corner. Denver legalised the recreational use of cannabis back in 2012, and since then, businesses are booming from this new revenue stream.
As prohibition is slowly being relaxed across America, marijuana dispensaries are becoming increasingly popular. Denver is Colorado’s capital, with over 400 dispensaries serving a population of around 716, 000.
Denver boasts over 160 ‘recreational’ outlets and almost 200 medical marijuana dispensaries. Compare to just 110 combined Mcdonald’s and Starbucks businesses, the popularity of marijuana use cannot be disputed in this city.
4. THC is only wholly legal in two countries across the globe.
Uruguay became the first country in the modern world to made weed 100% legal in December of 2013. By August 2014, Urugian residents were legally allowed to grow up to six cannabis plants in their homes. The government also created a special marijuana dispensary regime that is state-controlled. As marijuana use became more popular throughout the country, ‘grower’s clubs’ were registered, allowing members to cultivate up to 99 plants per year. Then, in 2017, 16 pharmacies were authorised to sell marijuana commercially.
Canada made marijuana legal in October of 2018, making it legal for an individual to possess up to 30 grams, as long as they are 19 years old or over. Every Canadian state has different cannabis laws. So, if you’re travelling there and hoping to smoke weed, check the state laws before you travel.
Industry experts suggest that countries such as Italy, Jamaica, France, The Netherlands, and the Czech Republic will eventually legalise cannabis.
5. Prescription medications have included cannabis as an ingredient for many years.
Long before the global legalisation movement, cannabis was being used medicinally. In the USA alone, cannabis was widely considered as a useful medical substance, present in more than 20 prescription medications.
Marijuana was listed in the U.S. Pharmacopeia in 1851, prescribed to relieve depression, anxiety, chronic pain, muscle spasms, and epilepsy. The famous medical book explains how cannabis can be used to help with sleep and pain relief.
It would appear that marijuana and its extracts were widely regarded for medicinal purposes up until 1942 when anti-drug campaigns started to impact its use.
There is no doubt that marijuana’s history is complex and continuously evolving. While some of these facts may be ‘difficult to prove’, sharing different perspectives and theories helps to promote discussion about one of the most popular substances on the planet.