How is CBD Extracted?
Cannabidiol or “CBD” is one of many components in the cannabis plant. CBD has been discovered to have a multitude of benefits ranging from easing anxiety to relieving nausea in cancer patients. It has been a trusted medicine used by our ancestors for centuries. CBD isn’t going anywhere either. Researchers are continually finding new ways CBD can help people.
CBD has been continually growing in popularity and used in a variety of different ways. CBD is being manufactured and produced in the forms of oils, edibles, and even topical creams. The most popular form of consuming CBD is CBD oil—especially when treating illnesses. This is mainly because of its unique effect on the endocannabinoid system. CBD provides many different benefits without the feeling of being “high.”
The different CBD extraction methods can have a significant impact on your health. Many people are asking themselves ‘how to extract CBD,” and it’s a vital question to ask. It is essential to understand the different CBD extraction methods to make sure you choose the right company and product that can help you.
How to extract CBD — CBD extraction methods
Before you can extract CBD, you have to start with a CBD rich plant source. Our hemp plants are CBD rich and organically grown in Kentucky without pesticides or herbicides. There are many ways to extract CBD from the plant. When learning how to extract CBD, it is vital to know the best, environmentally safe, and healthy methods. Some extraction methods are safer and more effective than others.
The purpose of extracting CBD is to separate the cannabinoid and create a highly concentrated form of it suitable for human consumption. When appropriately extracted, the THC is left out, and the goal is to have only CBD. CBD oil extracted from hemp is legal in all 50 states in the U.S because of how little, if any, the THC content is.
Now, let’s take a look at the three most common ways CBD is extracted.
How to extract CBD — Liquid Solvent
Using a liquid solvent like ethanol, butane, alcohol, or isopropyl is the most common form of CBD extraction. This is because it is a less expensive option that is fast and easy. However, it is probably the most dangerous method as the liquids are highly flammable. Using a liquid solvent also destroys the plant waxes which hold numerous health benefits. Another con of this method is that the process not only removes the cannabinoids but also removes chlorophyll along with it. The chlorophyll can give the oil a more bitter taste.
The liquid solvent method begins with the plant material such as the flowers and trim being put into a container. The solvent is then run through the plant material stripping it of the cannabinoids which are transferred to the liquid. The liquid is then evaporated from the mixture leaving the concentrated cannabinoids in the form of an oil.
How to extract CBD — Olive oil
CBD enthusiasts more often use the olive oil extraction process rather than commercial CBD producers. This process may be the oldest form of extraction that our ancestors would have used to make CBD oil and enjoy its benefits. It is a safe method, it’s inexpensive, and it’s relatively simple. The problem is that it is perishable and must be kept in a cool, dark place. This makes it an impractical method for CBD producers.
First, the raw plant material will be decarboxylated. It will be heated to a specific temperature for a specific amount of time in order to activate the chemicals in the plant. Then, the plant material is added to olive oil and heated again to extract the cannabinoids. With this process, the olive oil should not be evaporated. Because of this, the oil is also not as concentrated as it is after other methods—so users would need to ingest a much higher quantity.
How to extract CBD — CO2
Using CO2 to extract CBD is the latest and most advanced method. It is the most expensive method and is a complicated process. But, done correctly it is safe, potent, and free of chlorophyll.
The CO2 method has many benefits for the consumer. The only downfalls really apply to the CBD producers. This is only because it is a much more expensive and complicated process. However, many producers are willing to put more money into the process to produce a higher quality product for their consumers. This method does not remove the health benefits like other methods do, and the final product is much less likely to be contaminated.
The CO2 extraction method also allows for the temperature and pressure to be carefully adjusted during the process to isolate specific cannabinoids like CBD.
The CO2 extraction method is typically done using an expensive piece of equipment called a ‘closed loop extractor.’ This machine has three chambers. The first chamber holds solid, pressurized CO2 (dry ice), the second chamber contains the dried hemp plant material, the third chamber separates the finished product.
The CO2 is pumped from the first chamber into the second chamber that is holding the plant material, taking on the form of supercritical CO2 which is between a liquid and gas. The supercritical CO2 runs through the plant material extracting the cannabinoids. It is then pumped into the third chamber where the CO2 rises to the top of the chamber while the oils containing the cannabinoids fall to the bottom and are collected for consumers. This is a unique process that involves much knowledge of what the correct temperatures and pressures in the different chambers should be to get the best results.
What is the best option
After asking how to extract CBD, you may be wondering what the best method of extraction is. We believe the CO2 extraction method is the most beneficial way to go. The CO2 extraction process gives you all of the benefits with no downsides. You get a safe full-spectrum product that does not contain THC and will bring the relief you need.