Why Choose Hemp for Diapers?
Hemp does not need so much water and attention as cotton does in cultivation. Hemp is particularly absorbent, and may also be mildew resistant. That is a great plus for an item of clothing that will likely sit wet for several days before it is washed. Despite the ease of growth and breadth of uses for industrial hemp (or perhaps because of it), hemp is not grown commercially in the U.S.
But 100% hemp can be a bit too rough for a baby's bottom, unless it is fine linen. Most hemp fabric suitable for diapers is hemp blended with cotton, taking on many of the properties of cotton, including its softness. Soft and hard-wearing make a great combination for diapers.
One of the big drawbacks of the hemp/cotton blends most readily available in the U.S. is the cultivation and processing of the fibers is not so easy to see. Most come from China. How well are the farm laborers paid? How about those who process the fibers and operate the knitting machines and the looms? Production of these fibers is outside of easy view of U.S. consumers. It is because of this that we no longer offer hemp/cotton blend diapers.
Hemp itself is a fine fiber to use in diapers, but if you are looking to make the chain between the production and use shorter, this is not the best fiber to use until there is more hemp cultivated and processed closer to you.
Sustainability does not stop at environmental sustainability. It is important to choose socially sustainable fibers, too.
For articles and links on hemp, see our hemp resource page.
copyright © 2000 - 2007 Lori Taylor. Used by permission.