Hemp is still one of the most misunderstood plants. Despite a growing body of evidence on the value of its potential medicinal properties, the cannabis plant continues to be the center of a maelstrom of legalization controversies. At the root of the hemp controversy is one variety, cannabis sativa. In street lingo, this is weed, bale, bamba, boom, pot, Mary… and whatever floats your boat when you mean “marijuana.” The advocates for legalizing hemp and marijuana still have an uphill battle, but their advocacy is rapidly gaining ground. As of today, twenty-four states have legalized hemp growing and the use of marijuana for medical purposes.
What is CBD extraction?
The cannabis plant contains the cannabinoid molecule, which houses these two most popular compounds: THC and CBD. CBD, which is short for cannabidiol, is the compound reputed to have possible anti-inflammatory, antipsychotic, and anticonvulsant properties, among many others. Early research is promising, but there is still much more to be done before any conclusions can be drawn regarding its potential benefits. As a reminder, our products are not intended to diagnose or treat any medical conditions.
On the other hand, the potheads of the world value THC, the compound that induces the highs or psychotropic reactions from which the marijuana plant derives its notoriety.
The potency of cannabidiol or CBD is best felt in an extraction. In order to derive any possible benefits from hemp, cannabidiol or CBD must be extracted through proper methods. Cannabidiol extraction can be done in many ways, but what is important is the quality of the concentrate, which is dependent on the extraction process.
In order to maximize the amount of CBD during extraction, cannabis varieties with high CBD content are preferred. Growers have already succeeded in producing strains with much more cannabidiol content than THC.
The type of cannabidiol extraction is crucial to getting good quality CBD extracts. Some processes can be prohibitive and dangerous. How the cannabis plant is squeezed of its valuable CBD can have a lot of bearing on the end product. Consider these methods:
- Solvent-based Extraction Method – This method requires the most precise and thorough knowledge of extraction as the process poses some risks and requires great care. The cannabis plant is submerged in solvents, and the resulting concentrate is strained of plant matter and solvents. The degree of vigilance necessary requires serious scientific precision. People trained to produce a high-end quality cannabidiol extract with extreme precision are known as “extract artists.”
- CO2 Extraction Method – Carbon dioxide is subjected to high pressure and very low temperatures to make the concentrate. This method requires expensive and complex equipment. Although this is touted as the safest and cleanest method, the high cost of production translates to pricey CBD concentrates.
- Olive Oil – Infusing olive oil with a CBD-rich plant is the safest and most cost-effective way to make a cannabidiol concentrate. As the resulting extract is perishable, this method has to be home-based. Unfortunately, this does not promise as potent an extract as the first two methods.
Good quality CBD concentrates must be clean, potent, and affordable. When shopping for an extract, it would be good to know if it has been tested for purity and potency.