Hemp: An Emerging Industry
Conventionally Industry identification considers product scope and geographic scope (Porter, 1979). Traditionally, cannabis would come into Agro-Processing industry which
encompasses stages of operations post harvest viz. specifying quantity, quality, packaging and pricing for end user. Though with the advent of industrial hemp realizing the possibility of ~ 25,000 products, the booming market (expected to reach USD 26.6 bn by 2026 at a CAGR of 34%), and fostering factors, makes it compelling to analyse the Hemp industry.
The last several years have rapidly transformed the concept of a modern industrial hemp
industry from fantasy to reality (Robinson, R. (1996). The Great Book of Hemp. Rochester,
Vermont: Park Street Press). The essence of of statement can be felt today with the hemp
industry booming attributable to the by-products as well as plant-parts. The plant potential includes food, clothing, shelter and medicine.
As per market research by MarketandMarket, The industrial hemp market is projected to grow from USD 4.6 bn in 2019 to USD 26.6 bn by 2025, recording a CAGR of 34.0% during the forecast period. This considers various factors - be it regulatory policies of the Governments of the world, rising consumption of hemp edibles and cosmetics, increase in cultivation, and use in pharmaceutical industry.
A recent report stated that the global hemp industry reached USD 3.7 billion in retail sales in 2018, with an annual growth rate of 15% driven by continued strength in Chinese textiles, European industrials, Canadian foods, and the U.S. hemp-derived CBD market. China led all countries with nearly USD 1.2 billion in hemp sales in 2018, followed by the United States (USD 1.0 billion), Europe (USD 980 million) and South and Central America (USD 220 million). The report also suggested that as the regulatory barriers (factor) keep phasing out, the business will continue to expand with industrial applications and medicinal implications of hemp.
The European market is projected to capture the largest share in the market. This is attributed to the presence of a large consumer base for food, beverages, dietary supplements, and personal care products. Further, the usage of hemp fiber is growing in different applications, such as automotive and construction materials. Increasing consumption of hemp seeds in food and other food products such as smoothies, yogurt, cereals, and bars is expected to bolster the growth of the market further. The demand for hemp in the form of these products is considerably high in countries such as Germany and the Netherlands, thus, driving the regional market growth.
In India also, the Hemp Industry is developing fast with many companies starting up. Various companies in India have identified several applications of industrial hemp-cannabis and have a product line including hemp food, cosmetics (seed based), fabric, paper (fibre based), medicinal (mainly imported). India has an abundance of the crop in the Himalayas and it grows in other belts as well. The word cannabis is derived from cana or sana in Sanskrit; the market potential of hemp products in India is huge with demand in natural fibre and medicine chiefly.
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