Cannabidiol (CBD), an extract that many use as an anti-anxiety or relaxation tool, comes from the Cannabis sativa plant and cannot be divorced from this original source. Cannabis sativa has many different variations, and not all of these contain significant amounts of CBD. Prior to the gradual ending of cannabis prohibition in many locales, CBD was practically eliminated from the commercial black market to maximize profitability of the psychoactive cannabinoid content of the plants through selective breeding, according to many of the black-market growers I have spoken with throughout the years. The reason CBD is now widely accessible is most assuredly due to the change in social perceptions of this once-outlawed plant and the legalization of this plant in many locales. Without cannabis legalization, CBD would be difficult to acquire—and there would be no testing to ensure that consumers receive the product they are paying for.
Hemp, the low-to-no THC variety of Cannabis sativa grown for the oilseed and fiber it produces, can also produce CBD in varying amounts. Both wild hemp and cultivated hemp can produce CBD in their resins. No matter what variety of Cannabis sativa produces CBD, the molecule is always the same.
Non-psychoactive and increasingly popular as a relaxation drug, CBD can also be a DIY extract
One of the things I learned from the CBD farmers is that CBD can be an unstable and fleeting trait in cannabis plants. CBD production doesn’t just depend on the genetics of a plant, but the methods of growing, and what is also recognized in grape and wine production as the terroir. New strains of CBD-rich cannabis are being developed for the legal market all the time. I haven’t been able to try them all, but I’ve had the privilege of trying some of the most well-known strains, such as Harlequin, Harle-Tsu, ACDC, Cannatonic, Charlotte’s Web, Sour Tsunami, and a rare crop of Golden Goat, which expressed more than 8% CBD. This list is by no means complete in terms of CBD-rich cannabis strains available.
CBD to THC Ratio Selection and Dosing
— Does the product look fresh, and does it smell fresh and clean? Is the product or plant material dated with harvest time or an expiration date?
Well, all CBD products have CBD oil, an extract from the industrial hemp plant, in them. No wonder virtually all of them have ‘hemp-extract’ written somewhere on the label. After extraction, manufacturers generally take the CBD oil and infuse it into whichever would be its final form. That’s how you get CBD gummies, tinctures, vape oils, topicals, capsules, etc. But what is the method or methods involved? Read ahead to find out.
Currently, we know that when introduced to the body, cannabidiol interacts with the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a complex network tasked with handling many vital bodily functions, these include:
So, What is CBD?
Cannabidiol, more widely known by the shorthand CBD, is one of the many compounds or found in the Cannabis plant. It is actually the second most prevalent compound in them; THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the most prevalent. THC is the most famous among them due to its particularity of being psychoactive and the whole reason you get high from cannabis. CBD, on the other hand, became famous more recently because it does not get you high. What it does do, however, it offers you a myriad of therapeutic effects while, again, not getting you stoned.
Steam distillation is a tried and tested method used to extract essential oils for decades. However, compared to other methods like CO2 extraction, it remains quite inefficient for CBD extraction. It requires a substantially larger amount of cannabis plants. It is also harder to extract precise amounts of cannabidiol concentrate with this technique.
Also, the exact nature of carbon dioxide extraction makes it ideal for making specific CBD oil concentrations. Manufacturers can easily adjust the pressure and solvent ratios in order to get the desired CBD concentration.
CO₂ extraction has significant advantages over other methods of producing CBD oil. First, you can pump supercritical CO₂ through hemp in such a way that it selectively picks up the cannabinoids and other compounds, leaving everything else behind.
• Can be performed easily at home
• Relatively safe, with no previous extraction experience needed
• Greater degree of purity compared to solventless extraction
Solvent extraction is a rudimentary and risky practice, but it has fans. Essentially, it involves running a liquid solvent through decarboxylated hemp to remove cannabinoids and terpenes. The usual solvents include butane, ethanol, and hexane, so you need to safely evaporate any residual solvent post-extraction to ensure usable CBD extract.
Pros of supercritical CO₂ extraction
• Little control over the final extract
• Weak and unreliable CBD content compared to more professional methods
• Not suitable for commercial sale
• No additional equipment needed
• Makes use of the whole hemp plant
• Cheapest method of extraction
Once decarboxylated, mix your plant matter with olive oil and heat it on the stove for several hours. CBD, other cannabinoids and essential terpenes will bind to the fats in the oil, creating an infused product. Finally, the mixture is left to cool before being filtered to remove any leftover plant material.
Second, since it uses CO₂, it produces CBD oils free from chemicals and contaminants. And, when the extraction process is over, you can either reuse the CO₂ or release it safely back into the atmosphere. Thanks to this outstanding level of control, supercritical CO₂ has become a leading tool extraction and one that Cibdol uses to create all of its CBD extracts.