Vegetable oils: coconut oil, olive oil and other edible oils
Edible oils: Fat-soluble cannabinoids can be extracted by gently heating decarboxylated cannabis flowers directly in edible oils, using extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, butter and other edible oils. Although this extraction method is popular in small home extractors, the efficacy and shelf life of the resulting oil is much lower compared to other extraction methods and is therefore not recommended for large-scale commercial extraction of cannabinoids. However, it is seen by some as a more natural alternative to chemical-based extraction methods.
Please note that cannabis-infused vegetable oils are highly perishable, so they should be consumed quickly or stored in a cool, dark place with controlled temperatures. You can also “backfill” the storage container with inert nitrogen to extend the shelf life. This is a common process used in the wine industry to reduce the oxidation of wine.
Vegetable Oil Extraction Process
Vegetable oil extraction for CBD and THC home extractors begins with heating the original plant material in order to convert the cannabinoids into more bioavailable versions, such as CBDA to CBD and THCA to THC. this process is called decarboxylation or decarbonation.
Typically, the recommended decarboxylation temperature is approximately 284 °F / 140°C for 30 minutes or 248 °F / 120°C for 60 minutes. However, this is only a rough guide as it depends on your plant material and strain as well as the quality of the oven.
After completing this step, add the plant material to vegetable oil (coconut oil and olive oil are popular) and heat at 212 °F / 100 °C for 1-2 hours. This allows the decarboxylated cannabinoids of the hobby fat to bind to the fat molecules in the oil, leading to the extraction of the cannabinoids. The plant material is then filtered off, leaving the infused edible oil. The resulting solution is a mixture of plant oils, terpenes, waxes, and cannabinoids. Unlike other forms of solvent extraction, the cannabinoid solution does not separate from the solvent. The edible oil infusion is a distinctly “unrefined” oil for those who don’t mind tasting CBD or THC oil like cannabis.
This form of extraction is perfect for absolute beginners and home extractors who prefer to safely make their own cannabinoid-derived extracts without spending too much money on equipment. However, the end product is not as potent as those derived from more industrialized extraction methods such as CO 2, ethanol or hydrocarbons.
Non-solvent cannabis and hemp extraction methods
Nowadays, more and more consumers are seeking cannabinoid derivatives produced through non-solvent or “solvent-free” methods. This is because they are thought to be safer to use because they are derived using more “natural” methods. Whether or not this is correct remains a controversial topic of ongoing discussion in the industry.
In reality, non-solvent or solvent-free separation is not technically “extraction” at all, but actually “mechanical separation”. This means that the cannabinoids are not extracted from the plant material through a chemical process, but are separated from it through physical forces.
Ice-water extraction (mechanical separation)
Ice water based separation (“cold water extraction”) is ideal for producing ice water hash, also known as foam hash. This method is a very popular method to produce high quality hash without the use of any chemical solvents.
The method works by mechanically separating the cannabinoid-rich trichomes from the biomass using water and/or ice and agitation forces.
Note that although this method is commonly referred to as “aqueous extraction”, it is not actually technically “extraction” when that term is actually used. This is because the cannabinoids are not actually extracted from the biomass, but are separated.
Delta Separations has recently innovated the Vortex Trichome Separator (VTS-50), a technology that allows the hashish machine to gently wash the plant material as needed by controlling the vortex speed. This flexibility is one of the keys to minimizing material impregnation and harmful plant particles in the final product. The end result is maximum separation of the resin head from the plant surface, from negligence to the absence of plant particle contamination.
The trichomes are then retained in the water as a suspended, undissolved solid. Once this slurry mixture of water and wool is separated from the remaining biomass itself, it is filtered and separated out. The resulting wool is then made into a fine “pie” and dried to produce a high quality hashish end product.
Ice water-based cannabinoid derivatives (such as bubble gum) are ideal for spreading and are arguably some of the highest quality forms of cannabis concentrates available.
Cold Pressed Extraction
What it sounds like is cold-pressed cannabis or hemp oil. Similar to cold pressing olive oil or any other plant extract, the plant material is cooled, placed under tremendous pressure, and then crushed to literally squeeze the cannabis or cannabis oil out of the biomass.
The cold pressing process involves placing pre-cooled hemp or cannabis plant matter (flowers, leaves, seeds and stems) under pressure to extract a usable edible oil that can be consumed alone or mixed with other ingredients to make the desired final edible oil. Product.
Although cold pressing at lower temperatures maintains the desired terpenes, flavonoids and cannabinoids, the yields from this extraction method are low. Cold pressed cannabis and hemp oils are found in health products such as tin supplements and topicals.
Rosin and live rosin extracts are cannabis derivatives that are made by exposing cannabis or cannabis plant material to heat and pressure to “squeeze” terpenes and cannabinoids from the trichome glands of the flowers.
Rosin is highly regarded by cannabis and cannabis connoisseurs because of the perceived purity of consuming a product that has never been in contact with any man-made chemicals. Rosin is usually made from trichome-rich flowers, dried sieves (kief) or low quality hashish. “Active” rosin is prepared in the same way, but the raw material is frozen immediately after harvest to retain the “active” plant compounds.
The rosin pressing technique is similar to the cold pressing method described above, with the added use of heat and pressure to squeeze the hemp and cannabis oils out of the biomass. This is a popular solvent-free, small-scale extraction method because of its relative safety, fast learning curve and low cost.
A rosin home enthusiast might use a straightener, while a professional rosin extractor would use a small hydraulic rosin press with a thermal controller to produce large quantities of rosin. Regardless of the method chosen, rosin presses work on the same principle.
A cured, gently broken nugget is pressed directly between two sheets of parchment paper. If you are using a dry screen or miscellaneous grain, you may also need to place the ingredients into a rosin screen or mesh bag before placing it between the parchment sheets to reduce the amount of plant particles in the finished product.
The parchment “package” is inserted into the rosin press, heated and pressed.
Literally, the oil is squeezed out of your biomass and transported throughout the parchment to “capture” your valuable yield.
Package and store your rosin extract for consumption, usually through a glass wipe tube.
The quality of the biomass selected and the temperature used will play an important role in determining the yield and quality of the rosin extract. In general, the temperature range for toffee-like rosin products is between 300-335°F/ 149-168°C. If you are looking for a harder end product (e.g. crushed), you will want to target temperatures of 250-300°F/ 121-149°C.