Understanding Cannabis Concentrates

Cannabis concentrates are potent extracts derived from the cannabis plant, containing high levels of cannabinoids and terpenes. They offer a concentrated form of the plant’s medicinal and psychoactive compounds. These concentrates are gaining popularity due to their potency and versatility.

Different types of cannabis extracts will have different extraction methods, some use chemicals, some do not. They will each have their own cannabinoid content, as different methods will have a more efficient extraction rate than others.

Many of these extracts can be smoked in a joint but some are best suited for “dabbing” – a process where glass is heated, and the extract is dropped onto the hot glass to burn it. The smoke is then inhaled, similar to a bong hit.

Types of Cannabis Concentrates:

  1. Hashish (Hash): The most well-known cannabis extract is produced by separating trichomes from the plant material, typically compressed into blocks or cakes. The lighter the color the cleaner the hash. Hash (Lime Hash Cream Cake) can be smoked (in a pipe or joint), vaporized, or used in edibles.
  2. Kief: The trichome-rich resin glands of the cannabis plant are most often collected using a grinder or specialized extraction screens. 

Kief is used to enhance joints, blunts, or sprinkle on top of bowls.

  1. Rosin: This cannabis extract is made without use of chemicals. It is created by applying heat and pressure to cannabis flower or hash, squeezing out the resin. Rosin can be dabbed, vaped, or used in edibles (Raw Sins Rosin).
  2. Live Resin: Made from freshly harvested, frozen cannabis plants, this process preserves the plant’s natural terpene profile. Live resin offers a more flavorful and aromatic experience when dabbed or vaped (Gelato Live Resin Diamonds).
  3. Shatter: A type of cannabis extract that it made by extracting cannabinoids from flowers using solvents. The solvent used can be propane or CO², but the most common solvent used the make shatter is butane – sometimes called BHO (Butane Hash Oil).

Shatter is usually amber in color and may be brittle when cold. It is regularly used for dabbing. 

  1. Crumble: This is a very potent concentrate – THC as high as 90%. It is yellow in color with a crumbling texture and resembles honeycomb (sometimes referred to as Honeycomb Wax). It is most often dabbed but also can be added to a joint or blunt.
  1. Budder/Badder/Batter/Wax: Budder is similar to crumble but with a Like crumble but a texture like butter. Like shatter, it is made with BHO but when it is being extracted, the mix is beaten and whipped like butter, which gives it a creamier look than shatter, which is clear. The solvents are then evaporated leaving behind a concentration of cannabinoids.

Budder will have different textures at different temperatures.

Budder (budder)is most popularly consumed via dabbing, but it can also be added to bowls, joints, or blunts for added potency.

  1. Sugar: Sometimes called “sugar wax” due to its consistency like wet sugar, or sugar mixed with a liquid, but not dissolved. Cannabis sugar is made through chemical extraction and can be made from dried flower or fresh frozen cannabis plants. Sugar (KOLAS Sugar) often has a bright yellow or deep amber color. It is generally dabbed but makes a nice addition to flower smoking.
  1. Diamonds: Cannabis diamonds are crystalline versions of isolated THCA or CBDAThey are created by extracting the live resin from a cannabis plant using a cold-extraction method and then applying pressure to that oil by  mechanical means until it takes a crystal-like form. Diamonds (Raw Garden Diamonds) are well sought after by veteran dabbers as they sometimes contain as much as  99 percent THC or CBD (diamond products).
  1. Distillate: This is the purest form of cannabis concentrates with a high cannabinoid content, often used in vape pens or edibles due to its versatility and consistency. It is made in a similar way to BHO, where solvents are used to dissolve cannabinoids but with a more complex secondary process.

Distillate is most often found in vape cartridges (Americanna) and edibles (due to its near non-detectable cannabis flavor), but dabbers also enjoy its clean aroma and flavor.

Benefits of Cannabis Concentrates:

  • Potency: Concentrates contain higher levels of cannabinoids, providing a more intense and efficient experience.
  • Health Benefits: Precise dosing allows for tailored medical use, potentially aiding in pain relief, anxiety reduction, and other medical conditions.
  • Versatility: Concentrates can be consumed in various ways, including dabbing, vaping, edibles, and tinctures, catering to different preferences.
  • Reduced Inhalation: Vaporizing concentrates can be a healthier alternative to smoking, as it may produce fewer harmful byproducts.

Dosing and Consumption:

  • Dosing: Start with a small amount and gradually increase to find the optimal dose based on your tolerance and desired effects.
  • Dabbing: Involves vaporizing a concentrate on a heated surface (nail) and inhaling the vapor through a dab rig.

Dabbing has become very popular over recent years, and that is because of rosin. Because rosin is made with no chemicals, it is seen as a great, clean way to consume cannabis. Rosin is pressed against the hot glass of a dab rig causing it to evaporate and creating light smoke, which is then inhaled.

  • Vaping: Use a vaporizer designed for concentrates or a pre-loaded commercial vape cartridge. Settings for both can be adjusted to create the best experience.
  • Edibles: Infuse concentrates into oil or butter for use in cooking or baking. 

Cannabis concentrates offer a potent and versatile option for both recreational and medicinal cannabis users. Understanding the different types, their benefits, and appropriate dosing and consumption methods is essential for a safe and enjoyable experience, as these extracts are extremely potent and meant for veteran cannabis consumers.

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