Distributor:  Bullfrog Films
Length:  55 minutes
Date:  1996
Genre:  Expository
Language:  English
Grade level: 10-12, College, Adult
Color/BW:  Color
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Billion Dollar Crop

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The history and advantages of hemp as an industrial fiber.

Billion Dollar Crop

This surprising video explains the environmental interest in the non-drug variety of hemp as a versatile industrial fiber, and documents the history of its prohibition.

Backed by years of worldwide research, BILLION DOLLAR CROP exposes the political and industrial manipulations, which outlawed one of the most valued plants in history. Hemp once provided the paper on which US banknotes were printed, the cloth for the original Levi jeans, as well as the sails and rigging of ships. During World War II it was of such strategic importance that the US Government encouraged farmers to convert to hemp cultivation.

BILLION DOLLAR CROP shows how the recently developed, non-drug variety of hemp is being researched and cultivated internationally because of the plant's versatile qualities and environmental friendliness. This program takes the audience on a world tour from Australia to the United Kingdom, and from The Netherlands to France and the US. It illustrates how hemp is being cultivated as an industrial fiber for use as an alternative to wood for paper production, to cotton for clothes, and to plywood for construction. We all benefit, especially our forests and topsoil.

'As brilliant and hard-hitting a piece of TV journalism as I've ever seen...provides irrefutable evidence that this versatile, easily grown, environmentally friendly crop could provide thousands of jobs, billions of dollars in export and major reductions in our present-day environmental destruction.' Eden Institute

'Once again, our muddle-headed prejudices are costing us.' SMH The Guide


RIENA Environmental Film Festival
Olympia Environmental Film Festival
Hazel Wolf Environmental Film Festival
Conscientious Projector Film Festival


Main credits

Chobocky, Barbara A. (film director)
Chobocky, Barbara A. (film producer)
Chobocky, Barbara A. (screenwriter)
Cordell, Michael (film director)
Cordell, Michael (screenwriter)
Bruer, Jeffrey (screenwriter)
Bruer, Jeffrey (cinematograper)
Bruer, Jeffrey (editor of moving image work)
Thompson, Jack (narrator)

Other credits

Camera & editing, Jeffrey Bruer; music composed by Charlie Chan.

Distributor credits

Barbara Ann Chobocky

Barbara Ann Chobocky
Produced with Michael Cordell and Jeffrey Bruer

Docuseek2 subjects

Cultural Anthropology
Economic History
Agriculture Sector
Government Policy
Local Economies
20th Century
U.S. History
Plant Biology
U.S. Government and Politics
United Kingdom
Netherlands, The

Distributor subjects

Forests and Rainforests
Local Economies
Natural Resources
Social Studies
Sustainable Agriculture


hemp, industrial fiber, history; "Billion Dollar Crop"; Bullfrog Films

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