How Is CBD Oil Made?

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From local dispensary shelves to Facebook ads, CBD products are now everywhere. However, with more and more people making the switch to plant-based products every day, one of the most common questions users ask is, "How is CBD oil made?"

The answer to that question isn't a simple one, but one that might provide clarity to what you're putting inside your body. CBD manufacturers use various methods at all stages of production. Things like the extraction process and the type of CBD used to make your product matter when choosing where to invest your money.

This post will look at what CBD is, how it's manufactured, and the different types.

Production typically starts from growing hemp, the plant from which CBD oil is derived. Manufacturers cultivate legal hemp strains with the best potential to provide high levels of CBD, terpenes, and other active compounds.

The hemp plants are then grown outdoors, appropriately spaced to allow each plant to develop to its total size. Properly spacing the plants also allows natural sunlight to reach the entire plant, resulting in healthy, CBD-rich strains.

The CBD Extraction Process

The CBD Extraction Process

Once the plants have reached maturity, farmers collect and disperse them out in large barns to wither. The following step of the process is to mill the dried plants into powder. CBD is then obtained from these raw, dry plants (hemp). There are many ways to extract CBD from the plant. Each extraction method has its set of advantages and downsides. Let’s look at various CBD extraction methods.

Ethanol Extraction

Many CBD companies use ethanol extraction for its outstanding safety, simplicity, and effectiveness. This method includes using high-grade grain alcohol as a solvent to isolate active cannabinoids (including CBD) from the hemp itself. The most attractive element of this method is that it can be used under warm or cold conditions. And it’s more time-efficient than other methods.

Hydrocarbon Extraction

Hydrocarbon extraction is one of the easiest and most economical CBD extraction methods. It includes utilizing a light hydrocarbon solvent like propane, butane, hexane, or isopropyl alcohol to obtain CBD oil from the plant. These hydrocarbons can efficiently pluck out CBD oil thanks to their impressively low boiling point.

Unfortunately, while hydrocarbon extraction is more straightforward and less costly than other methods, it possesses several disadvantages. It often yields an extract with lower CBD concentrations and terpenes and a higher THC concentration.

It may also result in unstable extracts that can be dangerous to your health. Most CBD manufacturers now avoid this method as more and more people become aware of these drawbacks.

Oil Infusion Extraction

Oil infusion is one of the earliest CBD extraction methods. Many farmers use it because it's so simple. Extracting CBD employing this method involves decarboxylating the plant.

Alternatively, farmers heat the plant to a specific temperature to stimulate the compounds. Then, they add it to a carrier oil, like coconut oil, and heat it for about an hour.

This method's main drawback is that a lot of carrier oil is needed to get the desired concentration since the carrier oil can't evaporate from the CBD extract.

After the extraction, farmers distill the CBD oil to separate individual compounds (including CBD). This is done through winterization and short path distillation processes.

Winterization

Winterization is a method used to remove undesired compounds from the hemp plant. These compounds include lipids, waxes, and fats. This process is applicable only when you extract oil at high pressure.

The winterization process involves blending the oil with 200 proof alcohol until thoroughly mixed. The mixture is then kept in a deep freezer overnight. The following day, the cloudy-looking solution is then filtered. Manufacturers do that by pouring it through the filtered paper into a jar.

Once the mixture is refined to the desired quality and all the undesired elements are removed, the last step is to eliminate the alcohol. Eliminating alcohol from the new mix is achieved by heating the mixture. Since alcohol has a lower boiling point than oil, it evaporates as the mixture is heated.

Short Path Distillation

After winterization, the oil goes through a short distillation path to further refine the CBD extract and isolate it. This process involves heating the oil, isolating each compound. Since each compound has a different boiling point, they can be separated and used by themselves.

CBD Extraction Process

CBD Testing

The CBD testing process involves investigating the CBD oil for cannabinoid content effectiveness and safety before issuing it out to the market. Experienced CBD experts examine the product for purity and safety to ensure consumers get reliable, effective CBD products.

Decarboxylation

Decarboxylation is the heating process that transforms CBD into a product that the body can efficiently digest. That way, decarboxylated cannabinoids can effectively interact with the cannabinoid receptors in the endocannabinoid system for you to reap the various benefits. Most CBD products go through this process following extraction and distillation.

Takeaway

CBD products are quickly becoming mainstream wellness commodities, thanks to their broad range of health and wellness benefits. However, with so many CBD products available today, it can be hard to find genuine, effective products for your particular situation.

Having a broad understanding of how CBD oil is made can help you make the best decision when it comes down to it. If you want to learn more about CBD or look for high-quality CBD products,  Flora carries CBD products for every type of lifestyle.

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