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FAQs

What is the difference between industrial hemp and marijuana?

Industrial hemp is not marijuana. Industrial hemp comes from a different variety of the same plant species. Hemp, like flax, is grown outdoors in high volume, producing 4 to 12 tons of biomass per acre. Hemp has historically been used for industrial and commercial purposes because of its strong, durable fibers. Hemp is especially attractive as a crop because it can thrive in many climates and conditions around the world without pesticides and herbicides, making it a low-input sustainable crop with reduced toxicity and cost of production. Farmers cultivating it as a rotational crop reap benefits such as soil aeration, protection from wind erosion, and increased yields from subsequent crops. Hemp is an agricultural commodity, grown in many countries around the world with over 300,000 acres in cultivation. In the US alone, over the past three years, the number of acres has grown by approximately 150% each year and continues to rapidly increase. If you want to learn more about hemp as a low-input, sustainable crop, contact us at the email below.

Is a hemp-based, or bio-based, product as durable as a traditional plastic product?

Not all bioplastics are the same. They vary in production route, characteristics, end uses, and applications. Most bioplastics innovators have focused on thermoplastics such as Polylactic acid (PLA) and starch blends, which are great for compostable plates and silverware, however they do not have the strength necessary for industrial use. Thermoset plastics, like those that ZILA Works is creating, offer a superior alternative that forms more complex three-dimensional bonding structures during the curing process, improving the material’s mechanical properties such as enhanced chemical resistance, heat resistance, and structural integrity. That is, hemp has twice as many double bonds by volume as the nearest competitive bio-based feedstock, and double bonds are advantageous because they allow manipulation of the polymer to customize it to specific end characteristics.

I am a manufacturer. Why would my customers care about the use of a bio-based epoxy resin?

With the overwhelming amount of scientific evidence supporting climate change, and leaders of the outdoor industry drawing direct connection to the future viability of outdoor sports, end users have become more conscious of carbon footprints. Outdoor sports enthusiasts are looking for a way to preserve nature and reduce negative impacts on the environment. For example, outdoor clothing and gear manufacturer Patagonia built its entire brand on this premise. Another example is the not-for-profit organization Protect Our Winters, which was created to advocate for climate change awareness within winter sports communities and has grown into a wildly popular brand and movement.

What is the advantage of using a bio-based epoxy resin in manufacturing?

Traditional epoxy resins are formulated with a mixture of chemicals, of which some are known carcinogens such as bisphenol A (BPA), an endocrine disrupting chemical that causes negative long-term effects on human health. In addition, the mixture of chemicals used to create traditional epoxy resins are predominantly petroleum based. Those epoxy resins translate into negative environmental impacts and questions about the long-term sustainability of the industry. A bio-based epoxy resin made from industrial hemp eliminates the dangerous BPAs, improving the health conditions of manufacturing workers.

How can the use of a bio-based epoxy resin impact my company’s carbon footprint?

Net carbon sequestration by industrial hemp growth is estimated at 0.67 tons per hectare per year.  This calculates to approximately 1.70 pounds of CO2e sequestered in every gallon of hemp based bio-epoxy resin.  Compared to approximately 17.47 pounds of CO2e produced for every gallon of traditional epoxy resin, switching to this bio alternative means your company is part of the solution, not the problem.

Our team

Dr Jeff Gotro

CTO

Jason Puracal

CEO & Co-Founder

Evan Bouchier

COO

Kerrie Carbary

CFO

Jared Devine

2nd Co-Founder & Director of Sales

Janis Puracal

Director of Marketing

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