CBD was first discovered in 1940 by Roger Adams, a prominent organic chemist at the University of Illinois. Shortly thereafter, other scientists began testing isolated cannabinoids on lab animals; notably, Walter S. Loewe ran trials on mice and rabbits with the cannabinoids THC, CBD and CBN. He found that CBD produced no observable effects in the animals’ behavior while THC caused, what he called, a “central excitant action” in rabbits. Despite science’s movement forward, scientists were completely unaware of the cannabinoids’ chemical structure, so no one could tell which specific compound resulted in which effect.
As noted above, hemp seed cake makes an excellent feed for animals. However, feeding entire plants is another matter, because the leaves are covered with the resin-producing glands. While deer, groundhogs, rabbits, and other mammals will nibble on hemp plants, mammals generally do not choose to eat hemp. Jain and Arora (1988) fed narcotic Cannabis refuse to cattle, and found that the animals “suffered variable degrees of depression and revealed incoordination in movement.” By contrast, Letniak et al. (2000) conducted an experimental trial of hemp as silage. No significant differences were found between yield of the hemp and of barley/oat silage fed to heifers, suggesting that fermenting hemp plants reduces possible harmful constituents.
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