How are Oil Concentrates Made?
Concentrate products are made through a process that extracts and concentrates the active compounds, such as cannabinoids (like THC and CBD) and terpenes, from the plant. There are several methods used to create concentrates, each resulting in different textures and potencies. Here are some common techniques:
1. **Solvent-based extraction**:
- One of the most popular methods is using solvents like butane, propane, or ethanol to dissolve the cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant material.
- The plant material is soaked in the solvent, and then the mixture is filtered to remove the plant matter, leaving a concentrated liquid.
- The solvent is then purged from the liquid, typically through a process involving heat and vacuum, resulting in a variety of products like shatter, wax, budder, or oil.
2. **CO2 extraction**:
- This method utilizes pressurized carbon dioxide (CO2) to extract the active compounds.
- CO2 in a supercritical state acts as a solvent to extract cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant.
- The extract is then depressurized, which allows the CO2 to return to a gaseous state, leaving behind a concentrated oil.
3. **Rosin press**:
- This method involves applying heat and pressure to flower or hash to extract the oils without using any solvents.
- The material is placed between two heated plates, and pressure is applied, causing the cannabinoids and terpenes to ooze out and be collected.
4. **Ice water hash**:
- Also known as bubble hash, this technique involves agitating plant material in ice-cold water to break off the trichomes, which contain the active compounds.
- The mixture is then filtered through screens, and the collected trichomes are dried to produce hash.
- This process involves converting cannabinoids into different forms, such as turning CBD into THC.
- Isomerization is typically used to increase the potency of a particular cannabinoid or to create novel compounds.
It's important to note that the production of concentrates can be dangerous and should only be done by experienced professionals in a controlled and safe environment. Additionally, the legality of concentrates varies by region, so it's essential to understand the local laws and regulations before attempting to produce or use them.