cannabisnews.com: The Hempire Opens Downtown





The Hempire Opens Downtown
Posted by CN Staff on March 12, 2003 at 21:59:56 PT
By Dan Daly, Journal Staff Writer
Source: Rapid City Journal 
If you've doubted some of the arguments about the versatility of industrial hemp as a raw material, check out the new store in downtown Rapid City that sells nothing but hemp products. It's called The Hempire, and it is in the basement of the Buell Building at 632 St. Joseph St.Here's a partial list of hemp products on sale: shoes, baseball caps, stocking caps, T-shirts, postcards, patches, jeans, backpacks, hacky sacks, bar soap, liquid soap, hemp-oil lotion, hemp seed (a nutritional supplement), hemp fuel bars and hemp coffee. And more stuff is coming in, according to Andrew Kneip, one of the shop's partners.
"You can make upwards of 25,000 products from hemp," he said. "It's always biodegradable and environmentally friendly."Kneip and partners Sarah Childs and Jeremy Briggs are part merchants, part advocates for hemp. They opened the store in part to help advance the argument that industrial hemp should be legal.Hemp is a fibrous plant known mainly over the years as the raw material for rope. It is a cousin to marijuana  which is why it is illegal to grow hemp in the United States. Industrial hemp is at the center of a movement in South Dakota and elsewhere to legalize hemp farming.Advocates say it's a good cash crop that grows easily on the Northern Plains, doesn't require tons of fertilizer and pesticides and produces an environmentally benign product that can be used for everything from clothing to fuel.The government's position has been that hemp is nearly indistinguishable from marijuana. And marijuana is illegal, regardless of how much THC, the stuff that gets you stoned, is in it.A 2002 ballot initiative in South Dakota fell short, but supporters have not given up.Hemp is grown legally in Canada, and the fiber can be imported legally into the United States. And Canada is where most of the hemp in The Hempire products originates, Kneip said. The shop has a variety of suppliers who make and distribute hemp-based products.And for the record, Kneip said, "you can smoke tons of it and not get more than a headache."Store hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, call 484-8167.Contact Dan Daly by telephone at 394-8421, by fax at 394-8463 or by e-mail at:  dan.daly rapidcityjournal.comSource: Rapid City Journal (SD)Author: Dan Daly, Journal Staff Writer Published: March 12, 2003Copyright: 2003 Rapid City Journal Contact:  dan.daly rapidcityjournal.comWebsite: http://www.rapidcityjournal.com Cannabis News Hemp Linkshttp://freedomtoexhale.com/hls.htmCannabisNews Hemp Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/hemp.shtml
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