Granada-based Cannabric recently completed work on a hemp-crete based portal for the tiny village of Fir Tagourth in the hemp farming region of Morocco’s High Central Rif.
“The situation of the inhabitants was the our inspiration,” Monica Brümmer, Cannabric’s owner, said at the dedication of the project, noting that the village name translates to “behind the portal.”
Brümmer, a German architect, researcher and long-time natural builder, is working in partnership with Abdellatif Adebibe of the Moroccan Confederation of Associations for the Development of the Senhaja Rif Region, in an initiative to improve living conditions in the Rif by capitalizing on the economic potential of the region’s cannabis straw in retrofit and for new buildings, as well as its export potential.
“Our aim is to use hemp waste products in local development projects and to at the same time protect the environment from deforestation and erosion,” Brümmer said, noting how hemp can help to reach key goals of MEDCop 21, a conference held last her to highlight the region’s common commitment in the fight against climate change.
The portal, completed during Ramadan, was built with manually mixed and compacted hemp-mortars with natural binders, and employed a team of six Moroccan workers who had no previous experience building with the hemp-based construction materials used in the project.
The finished portal, a thick arch with two pillars, required 10 cubic meters of compacted hemp mix.
“All the work, including shuttering, was done by hand, without electricity
and water available” at the building site — where the work crew put in 14-hour days, Brümmer said, noting intense sun and strong winds helped speed drying of the material.