The era of grinding and rolling cannabis for smoking is long gone. Present generations are now opting to vaporize cannabis concentrates. It is more potent, safer, flavorful … behold the Cannabis concentrates!
What are Cannabis Concentrates?
Cannabis concentrates are the products of extraction of beneficial cannabis compounds.
Through the isolation of the resin-bearing trichrome from the plant’s undesirable byproducts, the end result is in its purest form. As pure as it gets, the extraction of this resin from the leaves and the buds of the cannabis plant gives high quality and very potent cannabis concentrates.
This resin-bearing trichrome is the combination of cannabinoids and terpenes.
- Cannabinoids are the chemical composition of cannabis, that make it as a medicinal plant.
- Terpenes, on the other hand, gives cannabis its aroma that appeases the mind and body.
How are Cannabis Concentrates Made?
There are two different extraction techniques used in producing cannabis concentrates. One technique is the use of solvent and the other is the solvent-free method of extraction.
This method uses a chemical solvent to strip off the essential oils from the cannabis plant. The most common types of solvents used when isolating cannabis compounds are:
- CO2 oil
- Butane hash oil
- Propane hash oil and
Carbon Dioxide Oil
When using CO2 oil, carbon dioxide is constricted under high pressure until it becomes a supercritical fluid – a substance that is both vapor and liquid. The CO2 oil formed will then be used to isolate essential oils from the cannabis plant.
Butane Hash Oil
The most widely used type of solvent in extracting cannabis concentrates is Butane hash oil. However, this method is complicated and dangerous to process.
Expertise is required when handling raw materials and appropriate machinery should always be used. Butane is pressurized within a container, poured over to the plant and the mixture is then purified by heat and vacuum. The end product would result in a form of budder, sap, honeycomb, crumble and shatter with varying consistencies and potency.
Propane Hash Oil
Similar to the extraction method when using butane hash oil, propane undergoes a higher pressurized extraction and the end results have less unnecessary byproducts. Thus, having a much higher terpene content. And since propane has a low boiling point, the purification temperature is similarly low, giving a buddery consistency as its end product.
Cannabis concentrates can also be formed by saturating the plant in alcohol. The end product of this type of extraction is also known as the Rick Simpson Oil. The crushed dried herb is soaked in alcohol for a minimal amount of time. Over-saturating the herb would dissolve it. Precise filtering and purification is a must during extraction of cannabis concentrates. This is safe to consume and convenient to make at home. The end result would be in a form of tincture that can be ingested orally.
As the name implies it, this is a cannabis concentrate extraction that does not use any solvent. This is the most untainted form of cannabis concentrates, and considered to be the highest quality. These types of extractions use water or gravity to isolate resin heads. These solvent-less products include full melt, full melt rosin, and rosin.
This type of extraction involves the use of a rigid silk screen to isolate the trichome heads from the plant. This is the most conscientious and natural process of solvent-less extraction. This gives the sand-like end product with superb flavor due to the presence of the most elusive terpenes, which give its rich aroma. It is also the most expensive type of solvent-less cannabis concentrate.
Ice Water Hash
This type of extraction involves the use of ice and water to isolate the trichome heads from the plant. After harvesting the cannabis plant is frozen. Then, it will be washed using a hash washing machine or manually stirred to isolate the trichome heads. And the trichome heads are then filtered and dried manually or with the use of a freeze dryer. Then the dried herbs are cured in an airtight jar. The longer the curing process is, the higher quality of hash is produced.
This type of extraction produces hash oil without using any solvent. It involves the application of heat and pressure to isolate the intrinsic oils from the hash. First, the full melt rosin is extracted with the application of ice and water. Then with use of a simple hair straightener at low temperature and applying great pressure, a high-grade hash oil will be produced.
Types of Cannabis Concentrates
This is the simplest of all cannabis concentrates. Kief is the crystalline sticky resin that covers the cannabis flower. It contains high amounts of terpenes and cannabinoids. Kief is extracted through a simple method of filtering using specialized screens.
End products include bubble hash, solvent-less wax and ice wax. Water hash is extracted through the process of using water and ice to isolate trichome heads from the cannabis plant. The filtered solution results in a golden-brown product in a form of granules.
As referred to it above, carbon dioxide is compressed under extreme pressure producing CO2 oil. This oil is then mixed with the cannabis plant to extract its essential oils.
Butane Hash Oil
Similar to CO2 oil, butane is placed in a pressurized vessel. The butane hash oil produced is then poured over to the cannabis plant and purified by heat and vacuum. The end product would result in a form of budder, sap, honeycomb, crumble and shatter with varying consistencies and potency.
With the use of a simple hair straightener at low temperature, great pressure and a parchment paper, oils from dried buds are extracted.
The introduction of Cannabis Concentrates in the industry has made a significant leap from the long-gone era of grinding and rolling cannabis for smoking. Despite the controversies in their legality, cannabis concentrates had gained popularity due to their high-quality end products, medical benefits, high potency and ultimate discretion.
Why Use Cannabis Concentrates?
Cannabis concentrates have a wide range of medical and recreational benefits. Here are some:
Cannabis concentrates are rich in cannabinoids, that provide relief to symptom-related ailments. And through the process of extraction, significant amounts of undesirable byproducts are removed. Thus, making the end products pure and highly potent.
As mentioned above, cannabis concentrates undergo the process of extraction, isolating the undesirable byproducts that can harm its users.
The end product is in its purest form, that primarily contains resin from cannabinoid-loaded trichomes. Thus, considered as a healthier option and at the same time provides superb flavor due to the significant amount of terpenes present in the concentrate.