Marijuana Concentrates are made from a couple different methods to extract higher concentrations of THC from the plants. These smokeable and edible concentrates are typically more than 80% pure THC. Concentrates include oil, wax, hash, and keif. Many opinions avail about which method of extraction is the best. It really boils down to personal preference. The two main methods of extraction are CO2 and Water. Here is a basic breakdown.
About CO2 Extraction:
CO2 extraction or Supercritical Fluid Extraction (SFE) is one of the most effective methods of extracting the beneficial essences from botanical matter. CO2 extraction is the process of forcing carbon dioxide through plant matter at a high pressure to separate specific desired elements. CO2 extraction is also a simplified procedure because only CO2 is used in the process. Other extraction techniques sometimes use harmful organic solvents that may leave a residue or trace amounts behind in the extract. CO2 can be easily and completely removed from the extracted material, creating a product that retains the purest essences of the original botanical matter. CO2 extraction is also used to create pharmaceutical elements, herbal essential oils, decaffeinated coffee, and cosmetics. CO2 extracts should be kept in a cool dark place, preferably in a glass container, and have a minimum shelf life of about one year.
Water extraction usually involves nylon mesh bags and ice water. Shake or trim is mixed in with ice water, agitated and strained. The goal of water extraction is to separate the psychoactive resin heads that sit on the trichomes from the rest of the leaves and shake. These resin heads contain Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive in cannabis. Once these resin heads have been separated they are cured. This process is generally used to make bubble hash, which is the most basic form of concentrate.
By Neil Charles