Hemp

Hemp is durable, comfortable, breathable and is farmed with low impact on the environment.

Why

Hemp is a natural fiber that’s cultivated with low impact on the environment. It needs little to no irrigation and uses less fertilizer than other crops. Cultivation of hemp requires no synthetic fertilizer, replenishes vital nutrients and prevents erosion.

We are also researching hemp’s potential use as a cover crop. Furthermore, the woody core of the hemp stalk — the stuff that’s not used in the textile process — has many bio-composite applications, from “hempcrete” construction to auto-body fabrication for a whole-systems approach.

Current rates of population growth and irresponsible farming methods have set us on course to lose all of our topsoil by 2076. Record rainfall rates in the American Midwest in 2019 are forecasted to wash enough fertilizer and pesticides into the Gulf of Mexico to create the largest-ever dead zone — an oxygen-depleted and barren patch the size of New Jersey. Hemp can help keep healthy soil in place at a time we need it the most.

Where We Are

The hemp we use in our products is grown in partnership with suppliers who use sophisticated processing techniques that minimize waste. We’ve developed unique performance materials by blending our hemp with organic cotton, recycled polyester and TENCEL®.

We created Iron Forge Hemp™ canvas for our Workwear line, a 12.9-oz 55% industrial hemp/27% recycled polyester/18% organic cotton canvas that’s 25% more abrasion resistant than conventional cotton duck canvas, yet comfortable and breathable. Our All Seasons Hemp canvas is a lighter-weight version of Iron Forge Hemp™ canvas (9.6-oz) for warmer weather work. For our sportswear, we use lighter-weight blends of hemp, organic cotton, recycled polyester and TENCEL® that keeps you cool and are comfortable without compromising performance.

What's Next

We’re working with innovative hemp processing partners on a whole-systems approach to ensure our entire hemp process has a low impact on the environment going forward. Our goal is to use clean retting, decorticating and degumming methods (the processes by which the fiber is separated from the woody inner core and stripped of its sticky lignins and pectins). We are working with bio-composite companies that can put the “waste” from our crop to use as building materials and other goods that provide alternatives to plastics and fiberglass.

Hemp
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