World Hemp Quarter to Highlight Humanitarian Projects

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Presentations on international hemp-based humanitarian and local development projects in North Africa and Asia will be highlighted during the World Hemp Quarter (WHQ), set for Paris Dec. 5-6.

WHQ is organized by Initiative Chanvre (The Hemp Initiative), an international effort to develop and promote low-cost business models and tools for entry into the industrial hemp business. The Quarter will be part of The World Village of Alternatives (Village Mondial des Alternatives – VMA) organized by the activist group Alternatiba.

The hemp initiatives to be featured include one in the Rif Mountains of Morocco where German hemp entrepreneur Monika Brummer of Spain-based Cannabric is helping authorities establish a program to use naturally occurring hemp straw in local construction, and assisting in the buildout of a rural economic development system.

A second project to be highlighted, by Shah Hemp Inno-Ventures (SHIV), Nepal, is pushing to clear the path for using the nation’s vast wild hemp crop for rebuilding some of the nearly half-million homes destroyed by the earthquake that struck the country in April 2015.

More than 50,000 visitors are expected in Paris next month for the World Village of Alternatives, which will take place during the run of the UN’s COP21 climate change conference Nov. 30-Dec. 11.

The VMA/World Hemp Quarter, to be held in the Paris suburb of Montreuil, will also showcase a wide range of hemp products and solutions, and marks the official debut of Initiative Chanvre, which held an organizational meeting during this year’s International Hemp Building Association (IHBA) Symposium last month in Germany.

“Our project is designed to help local farmers and entrepreneurs worldwide by creating a support system for the creation and development of localized economic initiatives based on the farming and processing of industrial hemp,” said Pierre Amadieu, one of the founders of Initiative Chanvre.

“The point is to gather a community of hemp stakeholders, and to collect their experiences and know-how to create an open source information centre,” Amadieu said. “We want to provide the knowledge and reliable contacts any entrepreneur might need to launch a prosperous local hemp business.”

The WHQ will feature stalls with hemp products and demonstrations of the wide range of hemp solutions for everything from construction to food. Stand positions and poster displays are being sold by IC to raise money for the group’s further efforts. IC also will hold informational sessions over the two days aimed at fine tuning the organization’s goals, Amadieu noted.

“This is an opportunity to illustrate to the thousands of visitors to Paris during the COP21 conference that there are real alternative solutions to help drastically reduce CO2 emissions, with the production and use of hemp materials and products,” said Steve Allin, Director of the International Hemp Building Association. “As any educator knows, adults need visual examples of knowledge. Talk is not enough on its own!”

“Our goal is to quickly, in a couple of years, foster thousands of local hemp initiatives and in turn begin storing millions of tons of C02 in newly resilient and thriving communities… and to say it all started during COP21 this year,” Amadieu said.

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