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Hemp is a natural, cellulosic, and bast fiber. This fiber is collected from the hemp plant, which is called Cannabis sativa. This plant is generally grown on the banks of the Capsicum Sea. It is interesting that this type of plant grows naturally or, for some reason, is cultivated manually. However, it is one of the fastest-growing plant types in the world, and it comprises a number of varieties of Cannabis sativa L. that grow for fiber and seeds. Additionally, industrial hemp is very high-yielding in biomass and requires a low level of irrigation and fertilizer after its establishment compared with other crops. While the cultivation process is near the flax cultivation process, It is a natural fiber, and it has a chemical composition that helps us identify this fiber from the others.
Chemical Composition of Hemp Fiber
Hemp is a cellulosic natural textile fiber and cellulose is the main component of hemp fiber. Moreover, hemp fiber essentially contains 5 major components like other plant fibers. They are
- Firstly, structural polysaccharides: cellulose and hemicellulose (the hemicellulose mainly being xyloglucans),
- Secondly, structural proteins,
- Thirdly, other polysaccharides, notably pectin (homogalacturonan),
- Then, lignin,
- After that, waxes, and
- Lastly, minerals.
The followings are the chemical composition of hemp fiber which calculates on a 100% basis. They are-
- Cellulose: 77.5%
- Hemi-cellulose: 10.0%
- Lignin: 6.8%
- Pectin: 2.9%
- Fat and Wax: 0.9%
- Water-soluble materials: 1.8%
Significantly, the chemical composition of untreated hemp bast fibers varies with the cultivar, harvest year, harvest time (or growing stage), and the location of fibers within the stems. In fact, the weather has an effect on hemp fiber cultivation. Additionally, the final chemical composition depends on the type of fiber processing.
In sum, this chemical composition will help us for the next processing. However, if we want to get good results, then we have to know the chemical composition of hemp fiber.