USDA to Discover New Hemp Ingredients for Cosmetic Products

USDA to Discover New Hemp Ingredients for Cosmetic Products

In an effort to explore the potential health benefits of hemp and how hemp can be used in skincare products, the US Department of Agriculture announced on Tuesday that it would be collaborating with an Illinois-based Midwest Bioprocessing Center (MBC). 

Reportedly, the department has signed a 24-month contract, where a team of chemists from MBC will be working together with the ARS National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research. To further explore the world of hemp, they will be working on a process called "bio-catalysis". Simply put, their research would involve using enzymes and heat to bind natural antioxidants with hemp seed oil. Binding natural oxidants to hemp seed oil will offer additional benefits like antioxidant properties. 

A similar process was conducted on soybean oil when a compound called FSG was mixed with the oil. The final ingredient portrayed some incredible benefits like the ability to protect your skin from UV rays and was licensed to be used in skincare products. 

Under the current agreement, the team will create similar ingredients from bio-catalyzed hemp seed oil. Hemp seed oil is used in various products for its potential benefits. It is known to relieve anxiety, depression, insomnia and regulate mood, sleeping patterns and appetite. But, like any other oil, hemp seed oil also contains fatty acids and other ingredients, which, once extracted, could provide additional benefits. 

In short, the ARS-MBC team will be using the bio-catalyst method on hemp seed oil to extract new ingredients. These ingredients could be added to cosmetics and perform functions like UV light protection, hydrating the skin and increasing the efficiency of other ingredients present in the product. 

According to the reposts, collaborating with MBS, a company with decades of experience in enzymology, could help uncover additional uses of the Cannabis Sativa plant. Moreover, along with discovering new techniques to add hemp in the skincare industry, additional studies on how hemp can be processed into fuels, lubricants and adhesives will also be conducted.