Isolates are high-dose substances and are mostly offered in powder or crystalline form. An efficient extraction system makes it possible to isolate cannabinoids from the hemp plant in their purest form. The resulting substance, with a purity level of approx. 99%, consists almost exclusively of the desired active ingredient.
The hemp industry often works with cannabinoid isolates which are added to products in the course of the manufacturing process. They are well suited for a variety of consumption methods and are also mixed into beverages and edibles, among other things. Isolates make it easier for the manufacturer to precisely maintain the desired dose of a cannabinoid in their product, so that they do not fall victim to natural deviations. Furthermore, they can guarantee that there is no psychoactive THC in their product if they use, e.g., a pure CBD isolate.
A distinction is made between natural, synthetically produced and liposomal (water-soluble) isolates. Natural isolates are produced from the hemp plant. For this purpose, the hemp biomass is extracted and a hemp extract is obtained. In the next production step, which is called “winterisation”, lipids (fats) and plant waxes are removed from the hemp extract by cooling chemical compounds. The winterised oil is then distilled, which removes chlorophyll, terpenes, and unwanted impurities. The final product is an odourless and tasteless cannabinoid isolate in its purest form with a purity level of 99%.
Synthetic cannabinoid isolates are produced by chemical synthesis. They are an active pharmaceutical ingredient that comes in the form of an ultra-pure, crystalline powder. At the molecular level, the isolates are chemically identical to the natural, plant-derived cannabinoids. Natural or synthetic isolates are used as a basis for the production of “water-soluble” cannabinoids. Their molecules are chemically modified, making them water-soluble.
Among CBD oils, broad-spectrum oils are some of the main products where isolates are used. These oils often only contain CBD isolates as an active and cheap ingredient. In contrast to more expensive full-spectrum products, CBD isolates do not contain any additional cannabinoids, terpenes, or other phytochemical compounds. Therefore, they are also more limited in their effect and have fewer health benefits.
Natural CBD and CBG isolates are finding more and more applications in cosmetics since they have been added to the EU “Cosmetic Ingredient Database” (Cosing). Formerly only expensive synthetic isolates have been allowed.