AS A CBD MANUFACTURER, WHY HAVE YOU ALSO DECIDED TO GET INTO THE HOUSING INDUSTRY?
STUART: REAKIRO truly wants to be a fully sustainable company, which has limited negative impact on the earth’s ecosystem. After our plants are harvested for CBD extraction there are literally thousands of tons of biomass left over. We wanted to find an economically viable use for this, so we sought out innovative thinkers that could find a way to repurpose and utilize this by-product, thus HEMPIRE was created.
WHAT EXACTLY DOES HEMPIRE DO?
SERGIY: HEMPIRE has developed a unique natural binder called the “Fifth Element”. It is revolutionary hempcrete technology that does not contain any cement, plastics and toxic components. It is used both as insulation and foundation. Our main goal was to develop a product that is local, 100% natural and 100% biodegradable. Working with it is easy, just mix our binder with hemp hurds and water and in a few minutes you have produced a hempcrete mix which is one of the lightest and most energy efficient in the hempcrete industry.
DO YOU BELIEVE THAT CONSUMERS ARE READY TO ADOPT YOUR PRODUCTS?
STUART: People care about what they eat, what they wear, what they drive. The same goes for where they live. Homes built out of traditional materials are infested with toxic, non-degradable materials that are detrimental to the owner’s health. New homebuyers are requesting more natural, sustainable solutions, which are energy efficient and non-toxic to their families.
HAVE ANY HOUSES BEEN BUILT USING YOUR PRODUCTS?
SERGIY: Over 50 projects have been completed around the world — from Ukraine to California.
WHO IS THE PERFECT CUSTOMER FOR HEMPIRE?
STUART: Our main customers are architects, builders, and prefab contractors. We have been steadily growing, but early adoption takes time. Education is key and we must help them understand how these new materials work, how they are produced and what kind of benefits they offer. However, we have found once they embrace our technology, they quickly become advocates and are ready to preach to other future home owners and developers about this truly magnificent technology.
When it comes to construction, we’re used to hearing words like concrete, cement, reinforcing steel, mineral wool, and polystyrene blocks. But hemp? Not so much. This is the story of a Ukrainian startup that produces building materials from industrial hemp and is already exporting its technology abroad.
This weekend Hempire’s founder, Sergiy Kovalenkov, will be sharing his expertise with attendees at the seventh annual NoCo hemp conference, the world’s most comprehensive hemp exposition and trade show. This conference will take place in-person in Denver, Colorado and is also available to stream online.