Hana Gabrielová has been studying and working with hemp for longer than most Americans have even known of the plant. She began her Bachelor’s Thesis on Hemp Agronomy back in 1997, having been inspired as a youth by the Jack Herer classic: The Emperor Wears No Clothes. These days, she teaches the science of hemp at Universities across Europe – and this year she’s finally coming to America!
1999 is the year Hana graduated with her Bachelor degree in Sustainable agronomy, and the same year that Konopa – the first hemp-centered non-profit environmental organization in the Czech Republic, was founded. Konopa aims to spread knowledge about hemp as a crop. Incidentally, Konopa is also a play on the Czech slang-word for hemp: konopí.
In 2001, Hana moved to Prague to work more closely with Konopa. It was in Prague that she helped Konopa make the first “day seminar” for farmers about hemp, together with the Institute of Agricultural Economics and Information (IAEI). To this day, Konopa continues providing hemp training, consulting, and a large publishing library of hemp agronomy.
In 2004, Hana started to work with Greenpeace in spreading awareness of the dangers and cost of Uranium mining and nuclear waste disposal, but in 2010 returned to hemp as a solution, and established her company, Hempoint S.R.O. – Nowadays she is helping with ongoing research into using hemp to remediate the soils of strip-mining operations and garbage dump sites. So far, hemp not only grows where no other crops will, it also rejuvenates the soil and allows more demanding crops to be planted afterward.
Hana has spoken up in defense of hemp before the United Nations. In fact, in a statement to the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, she reminded delegates that the original UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs in 1961 included the proviso that it “shall not apply to the cultivation of the cannabis plant exclusively for industrial purposes (fiber and seed) or horticultural purposes.” (Article 28, paragraph 2)
As she pointed out in that statement, not only is industrial hemp not illegal under any UN convention, it is also a massive boon in helping to achieve the goals of the Conference of Parties on Climate Change and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development:
- Hemp crops store CO2 emissions
- produce renewable material which can sustainably replace trees in making paper
- can be turned into biodegradable plastic
- hemp can be used instead of concrete for building
- and the rich seeds of hemp represent a meaningful nutritional contribution to addressing world hunger
But that’s what Hana does in her spare time.
On any typical work day, you’ll find her flying to Greece to help establish a hemp farmer co-operative, or at Mendel University in Brno teaching biotechnology students how to grow and cultivate hemp for use in future-tech. She also regularly meets with hemp farmers in the field to help them improve their methods and practices, as well as developing market sectors that will buy the hemp crop directly from farmers. That goal has taken her as far as the slopes of Nepal, where hemp doesn’t have to be farmed since it grows wild naturally. Entrepreneurs in Nepal have been gathering the wild hemp and turning it into all manner of consumer goods: goods which Hana buys from them to sell on a global market. She has even created a company to help in this regard: Hempoint.
Hempoint is a business which grows hemp in cooperation with farmers and produces food products made from hemp seeds, fiber, and flowers. Hempoint offers hands-on consulting along with the sourcing and distribution of hemp seeds to local farmers.
That’s what is bringing Hana to the USA.
Bija Hemp, a Colorado-grown company, specializes in the cultivation of industrial hemp across the United States. As part of that vision, they have arranged to bring Hana Gabrielová to speak directly with Colorado farmers who are planting Bija Hemp seed in 2017. This will be her first trip to the USA, and it’s no coincidence that hemp is what brought her here.
Hana recently imported the US Patient Focused Certification (PFC) into Europe, and she is the PFC Director for Europe. PFC establishes quality standards in cannabis cultivation, production, distribution and laboratory analyses, as well as employee training and educational materials. PFC helps to define the processes, procedures, and materials to ensure that hemp products are of consistent quality, are free of harmful substances, and have their own unique identity, so they can be identified if necessary at the retail market.
In turn, she is repaying that generosity by sharing her knowledge and experience with US hemp farmers – and she’s bringing friends too! Joining her will be experts from the Ukrainian Hemp Institute (UHI) – an organization with one of the longest unbroken and documented histories of hemp cultivation and research dating back to 1931.
“I’m coming to Colorado to bring that experience from Europe, to work with both the University and the farmers to create an ongoing research project,” she told me. “I know the plant, but they know the climate and the soil.”
The University she is referring to is Adams State University in Alamosa, Colorado. Thanks to Dr. Beverlee McClure, President of Adams State University, and thanks also to Bija Hemp; Hana will be working directly with both the University and the local farmers to develop proper procedures for farming hemp in the region, as well as a University curriculum based around industrial hemp.
Bija Hemp have partnered with Adams State University and the Hoban Law Group to organize the United States first fully Farm Bill compliant hemp seed importation. In addition to hemp seeds, they are importing the vast libraries of knowledge from Europe, as well as the enthusiasm and experience of pioneers like Hana Gabrielová.
Meetup with her at the NoCo Hemp Expo in Loveland, Colorado from March 31st-April 1st, 2017. Or contact Bija Hemp to find out how you can attend the private presentations she will be giving throughout Colorado in the first weeks of April 2017: [email protected]
Come be a part of History in the making!