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This Pune Cafe Will Serve You 'Bhang Ka Sandwich', Hemp Coffee Perfectly Legally

By: Neelam Karale

News18.com

Last Updated: June 02, 2022, 13:18 IST

 It is not just tasty but also legal to eat or drink hemp in the form that this cafe serves. (Credits: News18)

It is not just tasty but also legal to eat or drink hemp in the form that this cafe serves. (Credits: News18)

Amruta was in her 30s when she started the Hemp Cafe in Pune. She has been selling her hemp-infused food products for the past four years.

Fancy a hemp sandwich or a marijuana burger? You can get one- perfectly legally- at this Pune cafe famous for its “bhang ka sandwich”. It is not just tasty but also legal to eat or drink hemp in the form that this cafe serves. Shocked to hear about this cafe serving Bhang coffee and other Bhang-infused dishes in the middle of Pune? Meet the young owner of The Hemp Cafe- Amruta Shitole, who’s all too willing to clear the air regarding doubts and misconceptions.

Amruta was in her 30s when she started the Hemp Cafe in Pune. She has been selling her hemp-infused food products for the past four years. Amruta claims that Bhang or hemp has proven medicinal values. AYUSH has recognised hemp and already many Ayurvedic and Unani medicies use hemp in different forms and concentrations. “Bhang or hemp has unbelievable health advantages and from my personal experience, I realised the benefits of this medicinal plant,” Amruta said.

“We use seeds of cannabis and not leaves. Most of us have misconceptions about hemp. We consider Bhang as just one of the traditional addictive used only to get the high. We often call it marijuana, which is a narcotic. Although marijuana and hemp are names for cannabis, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content in them is different from each other,” Amruta told News18.

Legal hemp must contain 0.3 percent THC or less for the use in medicinal or culinary products. Cannabis plantation is not yet legal in Maharashtra, but Uttrakhand made it legal a few years ago. Amruta and her partner source cannabis from that state and make tasty and healthy products out of it. “I was already selling Hemp oil, hemp laddu, protein powder and many such products. But I started this cafe to clear the misconceptions of people around hemp. Bhang is good as well – this is the message we wanted to give through this cafe. Hence we have the hemp cafe museum here. You will find all the factual information about cannabis over here,” she said.

A few years ago, Amruta was depressed and using anti-depressants. She realised the medicinal use of hemp during a trip to Uttrakhand. “I was amused to experience the miracle-like benefits of this plant and it was a turning point for me,” she said.

Amruta is in the process of filing a petition to make cannabis plantation legal in Maharashtra. “The plant is like sanjeevani. Hemp fibre, hemp ply, oils and of course medicines could be made out of it. The plant consumes far less water compared to other cash crops and it increases the soil fertility as well. Hemp was used in Ancient paintings in Ajantha, how many of us know that and yet, why are we not making it legal?” She asked.

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first published:June 02, 2022, 13:18 IST
last updated:June 02, 2022, 13:18 IST