Different Methods of Cannabis Concentrate Possessing
Subcritical CO₂ has become a popular extraction method, as it provides a high quality cannabis extract that retains terpenes, cannabinoids, and other sensitive plant compounds due to the low temperature and low pressure extraction process. The subcritical CO₂ method is very clean method, but will yield a lower quantity of extract than supercritical CO₂ processes. Subcritical has been known to preserve the delicate terpenes and plant compounds that are often damaged in supercritical state, which is why you would see the smaller, personal extractors favor this state of carbon dioxide on their hobby-size extraction equipment. In order for a production facility to offer a wide range of cannabis derivative products, the company would be best suited with an extractor that can properly operate in subcritical and supercritical CO₂ pressures and temperatures. Cultivation Suppliers is a trained and authorized distributor of Eden Labs’ professional extraction equipment, and will be able to properly size the extractor for your production volume and style.
The difference between subcritical and supercritical is that the carbon dioxide is in a fluid state that is held at or above a critical temperature and critical pressure, which will fall between the liquid and the gas state of CO₂, which is often called a supercritical fluid. Supercritical CO₂ cannabis extraction has become the most popular method for production extraction companies for several reasons. Cultivation Suppliers believes in CO₂ as the extraction method of choice for production facilities due to the increased safety that carbon dioxide has over other solvents, with lower toxicity levels and less environmental impact. Supercritical CO₂ also produces a high quality cannabis extract, with the highest yield compared to other CO₂ extraction methods. The supercritical CO₂ method is also very clean, but due to the higher temperature and pressure, the CO₂ will operate as an effective solvent that separates essential oils, terpenes, cannabinoids, and even larger molecules such as chlorophyll, plant waxes, and lipids from the plant material being extracted. As the operator occasionally fluctuates the pressure and temperature of your extract passing through the fluid path of the extractor during the run time, you will extract different levels of desirable plant compounds depending on the variety being extracted. As the cannabis industry develops, the cleanest and most refined cannabis extracts are highest sought after. The way to bring high quality and quantity together is with a precise supercritical CO₂ extraction process and post-extract winterization and distillation processes, as this will allow for you to separate the plant solids, chlorophyll, and waxes from essential oils that are extracted during supercritical states of carbon dioxide pressure. Cultivation Suppliers provides the best CO₂ extraction machines in the industry for production and boutique cannabis extraction.
Light Hydrocarbon Extraction
Light hydrocarbon extraction incorporates a low pressure extraction process that typically uses butane, hexane, propane, or a mixture of them. This method of extraction does not yield the same volume or spectrum of extract that critical CO₂ will produce, but is considered to be popular due to the reduced run time. This has also been made popular by the home-hobbyist cultivator as well because light hydrocarbon extraction is known for lower cost inputs than CO₂ extraction processes. Due to the lower pressure and temperature required for light hydrocarbon extraction, many of the plant fats and waxes are left on the source material, causing the terpene content to be less damaged and more noticeable without the need for extensive refining processes. The cost to setup a light hydrocarbon extraction machine is less than CO₂ extraction machines, but is does require the same secondary equipment as CO₂ extractors in order to make a commercially viable product. This will mostly be the vacuum “purge” ovens that will purge the residual solvent from the final product, making it safe for consumption. Light hydrocarbon extraction labs and facilities are significantly more difficult to pass permitting due to the requirement for a controlled environment constructed to UL Class 1, Division 2 standards. Contact Cultivation Suppliers to get your extraction lab designed for you today!
Ethyl Extraction is the preferred extraction process to achieve either a full spectrum extract (like RSO/Rick Simpson Oil) or to concentrate cannabinoids and plant compounds that are typically deeper in the plant tissue and less present on the surface of the plant material (such as CBD, CBN, etc). Ethyl Extraction is a secondary process that Cultivation Suppliers recommends as the “Best Practices” for CO₂ extraction, as it will separate the waxes and impurities from your cannabis extract. Ethyl alcohol extraction is often preferred over isopropyl extraction, or grain alcohol, because isopropyl is denatured and grain alcohol typically has a lower proof of alcohol by volume. Cultivation Suppliers provides leading industry ethyl extraction machines and standard operating procedures for your production extraction lab.
ROSIN Extraction is a very simple form of extraction using a combination of heat and pressure with the intention to vaporize the volatile terpenes. This process is as simple as placing filtering material over cannabis bud or raw plant material and using a heat press to cause the active plant compounds to separate and ooze through the filtered material, resulting in a consumable extract. The drawback of this method is that you are super heating the extract, breaking the acid chain of the THCA isoform and beginning the decarboxylation process. This method does not provide the extract at the volume of the methods listed above, although it has been made popular for smaller gardens for personal consumption. Without secondary processes to refine the extract, the ROSIN will typically still have the non-psychoactive plant fats and waxes in the extract.
Clear Extraction is a new method that has been becoming more commercially viable with the growth of the commercial cannabis industry. The concentration of psychoactive ingredients is typically higher in this method of extraction, as there is a process of isolating the desirable cannabinoids. There have been advancements made in the process of creating a clear extract, with a common misconception that these extracts might exclude certain attributes that are favorable to consumers such as smell, taste, and even a limited range of cannabinoid spectrum. Clear extract is a timely process with a number of variables in place, and requires a more advanced operator to fine-tune their process for their specific variety of plant. Cultivation Suppliers provides equipment to create Clear extracts on a production scale.
Cannabis Terpene Isolation
Cannabis Terpene Isolation is the ability to concentrate pure cannabis terpenes during the extraction process, often referred to as “Holy Water.” This process can be completed in two stages. During the process of CO₂ extraction, you can ask Cultivation Suppliers to provide you with the ideal time range and pressure required to fraction the terpenes from your plant material, as well as isolating the cannabinoids. The second stage can be achieved through the process of cold trapping purged moisture from the concentrate when curing in a vacuum chamber. These two stages of terpene isolation, however, still require secondary processing to remove the hydrosol to make the product desirable to the consumer. This method is rapidly growing in popularity in the cannabis concentrate market, and Cultivation Suppliers will help you stay ahead of the curve.
Decarboxylation of Cannabis
Decarboxylation of Cannabis is a method of putting compounds through a heating process that is measured in both time and temperature. Once the decarboxylation process begins, THCA converts into THC by releasing a carbon atom from the carbon chain. Once this acid chain is broken, the psychoactive attributes of cannabis are available to the consumer, compared to a growing plant with little THC and higher concentrations of THCA. This process occurs naturally when time passes with the cannabis is dried. This process can be expedited when cannabinoids reach particular temperatures through vaporization, smoking, or baking with THCA rich cannabis. This is why you will notice that a tincture will be higher in THCA than THC, due to the lack of heating or baking when making a tincture extract in a high proof alcohol. Typically, the only time decarboxylation is necessary is when creating a raw (uncooked) cannabis product that is being consumed or ingested without vaporization or smoking as the source of ingestion.
Fractionation of Cannabis
The Fractionation of Cannabis is the process of individual separation of different cannabis plant compounds, such as cannabinoids and terpenoids. This process can be completed in a number of ways, but this skill requires the correct extraction equipment. Fractionating can be achieved with centrifugal equipment although is more typically completed through standard extraction methods. The Eden Labs’ CO₂ extractors provided through Cultivation Suppliers will allow the fractioning/separation of the cannabis compounds.