The Hemp Health & Innovation Expo has come and gone and what a success it was! On the weekend of Saturday May 14 – Sunday May 15, Rose Hill Racecourse was home to the largest hemp expo Sydney has ever seen.
There was an array of exhibits showcasing the diverse range of uses for hemp on a both a medicinal and manufacturing level. This included stalls for medicinal cannabis, hemp clothing, textiles, beauty & health products, building materials, hydroponic equipments, supplies, hemp fibres and food. There were also scheduled talks from prominent figures in the hemp community exploring the medicinal potential of cannabis and the hemp industry as a whole.
The majority of the stalls were dedicated to medicinal cannabis and hemp cultivation, but alongside these were representatives from all walks of the cannabis community. I had the chance to attend the expo and observe this community in action.
From the moment I entered the hall, I felt a warm and welcoming presence. The rows were alive with smiling faces and bustling activity. Expo goers wandered between stalls carrying bags filled with promotional products and talking to one another. The excitement was palpable: you could almost smell it lingering among the heady aroma of hemp that wafted through the room. The source of this was a hydroponic grow tent at the forefront of the stalls displaying the work of hemp farmer and President of the Northern River Hemp Association, Andrew Kavasilas.
Like many cannabis enthusiasts, my experience with the actual plant that produces marijuana has been limited. I only see the final product, picked processed and ready to be consumed, which itself is one of the issues with marijuana prohibition. To see these plants growing was fascinating to say the least, but even more so was the sense of security that came with viewing them in a safe and legal environment, which I think is one the most important elements of events like these.
One of the stand-out exhibits was Doc Croc, a wholesale company operating in the US that specialises in legal cannabis production and processing. I spent some time chatting to the representative about the rapid changes in attitude towards pot that have swept the USA. Although one can never be definite about these things, he was positive about the possibility of legal cannabis in Australia. “The war on drugs started in America, and in America the war on cannabis is coming to an end,” he said with excitement. The very fact that a company like Doc Croc was at the expo bodes well for legal cannabis in Australia.
I also had the chance to attend one of the scheduled talks by Andrew Kavasilas. He spoke about the techniques of hemp farming and some of the medicinal potential for low-THC cannabis, especially in relation to the treatment and alleviation of suffering for cancer patients. He also talked about some of the obstacles facing the research and adoption of medicinal cannabis in Australia as a result of international legislation regarding cannabis as an outlawed substance.
All in all the expo was fun, exciting and incredibly educational. We’re excited about what it means for cannabis in Australia. Although not said explicitly, there was an unspoken consensus evident from the atmosphere: legalisation is on the horizon. Events such as these bring us one step closer to a society that understands the truth about cannabis and the potential it has for human well-being and we look forward to more in the future.
Check out the Hemp Health & Innovation’s website here.