Just like hemp, handloom fabrics are also native to India. In Uttarakhand where the local farmers grow industrial hemp, they work closely with the Athulya Krishi Foundation or AKF, a not-for-profit organization which is a subsidiary of Bombay Hemp Company.
Industrial hemp is indigenous to the mountain regions of Uttarakhand and an important source of livelihood for the villagers who are primarily farmers. Since 2016, AKF has worked towards promoting the interests of farmers, utilising the true potential of industrial hemp and encouraging social welfare activities in the hilly regions by supporting handloom and handicraft industries.
Through AKF, many women artisans are employed who are trained in developing handloom textiles using hemp, thereby creating livelihood opportunities for them. This has not only benefitted the entire value chain economically in the region but has also had a positive impact on the people's health and the environment, considering hemp's cultivation requires little water and no pesticides to grow.
Making of handloom fabrics takes time, effort and patience. Different regions have different weaving techniques that are passed down through generations. It is safe to say that handloom fabrics follow the ethos of slow fashion where the focus is on making high-quality products using sustainable materials. Our handloom fabrics made from hemp are organic and durable with applications across apparel, upholstery, home decor, and accessories, and come in blends like organic cotton, wool, and nettle.