Cannabis distillates are among the purest cannabinoid concentrates, as they have a particularly high potency of individual cannabinoids. A series of extraction and purification processes transform the raw hemp material into the distillate found in a significant number of cannabinoid-based products.
Unlike non-distilled extracts, distillates contain essentially no substances or unwanted residues. Cannabinoid distillates have a higher concentration of cannabinoids than pure extracts. Optionally, they are completely THC-free or have a minimal THC residue of less than 0.2%. There is, e.g., no THC in broad-spectrum distillates, while full-spectrum distillates still have a small amount of THC and other cannabinoids.
Distillates are obtained from hemp extracts using heat and a vacuum. Cannabidiol (CBD) and other cannabinoids and terpenes are separated from less desirable compounds such as fats, waxes, and pigments. The base extract is heated under a vacuum until the desired cannabinoid begins to evaporate. As soon as the vapour rises, it is collected in a condenser, which cools down and liquidizes the cannabinoids again. The concentrated substance that results is thus free of unwanted solvents, pollutants, and the naturally occurring flavours of the cannabis plant as they have different boiling points. The distillate is slightly yellow and has a sticky consistency.
The different boiling or evaporation temperatures play an essential role in the distillation process of the respective components of cannabis and hemp extracts. For example, THC boils at 155°C and thus evaporates earlier than CBD, which boils at 165°C. Most terpenes evaporate at lower temperatures, while most minor cannabinoids boil at higher temperatures. Fats, waxes, and other unwanted compounds always boil at higher temperatures, but these can also produce unwanted compounds like benzene. To prevent this, we distil CBD in a high vacuum, where we use much lower temperatures between 0°C and 100°C. In this way, we prevent burns and the formation of toxic chemicals.
Distillates enable manufacturers of hemp products to offer highly concentrated cannabinoids with residues of terpenes and flavonoids supporting the entourage effect. If the extract of a cannabis plant does not contain enough naturally occurring CBD, distillates or isolates can be used to achieve a more optimal ratio. The disadvantage here is that the so-called “entourage effect” might not occur as strongly as in untreated crude oils. This refers to the synergistic interaction between cannabinoids and terpenes, in which the effect of each individual compound involved is enhanced. If all other cannabinoids are removed from the substance, the potential benefits of the entourage effect do not occur.
We offer a wide range of cannabinoid distillates of major and minor cannabinoids. By carrying out quality checks and laboratory analyses before and after distillation, we ensure that we maintain a complete overview of our products and can also provide the relevant quality certifications.
There are many different distillates on the market all having different cannabinoid and terpene profiles and different properties regarding taste, consistency and colour.
During production of broad-spectrum distillates, special precautions are taken to reduce the amount of contained THC to a minimum. Through this process, the resulting distillate is free of THC but also has some other cannabinoids and terpenes lowered in the final concentration. This results in a product that is safe to use in food applications but doesn't provide a full spectrum of cannabinoids and therefore doesn't feature the entourage effect.
Full-spectrum distillates resemble the natural cannabinoid composition of the hemp plant. It contains all cannabinoids and terpenes and features a more herbal taste. Its THC level is <0.2% to allow usage according to EU regulations. Due to its compositon, it features the entourage effect and therefore achieves the best effect when used.
Vape distillates are a special category of distillates that come in a very low viscosity in order to be directly used as a pure liquid for vaping without the need to add any carrier such as propylene glycol (PG) or vegetable glycerin (VG).