These days there are dozens of types of cannabis concentrates on the market, and it can be hard for anyone to wrap their mind around exactly what they’re buying. However, all of these products have one thing in common: they are all byproducts of marijuana plants that have been made by extracting the useful ingredients from the plant. Here’s a breakdown of what you need to know before you shop.
The first thing you will learn about concentrates is that there are several different extraction methods used to obtain the valuable active ingredients from the plant matter. The most common method of extraction is Butane Hash Oil. The BHO process uses heat and pressure to force butane through the dried plant matter, leaching out the cannabinoids, terpenes and other chemicals. The resulting product is then cleansed of butane to leave just the cannabis byproducts in an isolated form. The oil can then be turned into a variety of different concentrate products that we will discuss later. BHO is generally only performed by professionals in a controlled environment because the process can be dangerous. A less common extraction method substitutes propane for butane, which is slightly safer but still should not be attempted without training.
Creating your Own Extracts
For those who want to create their concentrates, there are several other methods available. For instance, rosin technique allows you to create concentrates without adding any additional chemicals to the mix that could be unstable. This can easily be done with a heating plate and parchment paper.
Dry Sift Extraction
Finally, dry sift extraction uses a series of excellent filters to sift the chemical-laden trichome heads off of the plants slowly. This means that the finished product will be free of dry plant matter for the most part, and all you will have is the tiny fibrous trichomes left over. This method is less common than others because it is very labor intensive and it consumes a large amount of flower with very little resulting concentrate.
Full Melt Concentrates & Ice Water Concentrates
There is also full melt concentrates and ice water concentrates that are made with their own extraction processes. These are fairly uncommon to see in stores and tend to be more expensive because there are not many companies able to create these products on a commercial scale.
While we are talking about the extraction process, it is also important to mention the source material being used. Some companies use their best nugs to sell as flower products on the shelf, and use only the trimmings from their plants to make concentrates. The result is that the concentrates produced are less potent and less flavorful. It can also mean that they are mixing many different strains to create a batch of concentrate. On the plus side, these products tend to be marked down because they are made from the leftover material. Most companies identify any of their concentrates that are made from trimmings so you will know what to expect.
On the other hand, you may also see some concentrate products marked as “live.” A live concentrate means that the extraction process was done using fresh plant material that had been frozen instead of dried. Advocates of live resin products say that using fresh and frozen plant materials keeps more of the plant’s natural attributes, flavors and scents in play when compared to dried plant matter.
Once the concentrate is extracted from the original plant matter, it can be used to create some different final products. At the lowest level is cannabis oil. Cannabis oil can come in a wide range of strengths, but also tends to have a lot of terpenes and other chemicals present. As you search for oils, you should consider the purity level of the product to determine how potent it will be, as well as how much flavor it will have. Oils can be used in some vaporizers, or they can be used to create topicals, moonrocks, and other products. However, they are not generally used for dabbing because they are difficult to handle and transport without making a mess.
Sap is another liquid concentrate that is available. It is more syrupy than oil but is significantly easier to control. Most people still don’t use sap for dabbing, but it can be useful for moonrocks and other products because it mixes easily.
Budder & Wax
The next step of production is usually budder or wax. Both budder and wax are made of a refined oil that has been thickened up to a malleable substance. They are relatively close in terms of how they are used for dabbing, although you will notice that budder has a slightly drier, crumbly texture to it while the wax is smooth. These products can also be found in varying strengths and flavors depending on what type of product was used in the original extraction process.
Pull ‘n’ Snap
Further down the line you will find pull and snap concentrate products. These tend to be harder to find, but there are a few companies that specialize in this type of product. These concentrates look and feel almost like taffy. They are slightly oily on the outside, which makes them a bit sticky when handled. However, they are easy to carry with you, and you can always pull off a piece and plop it right onto a nail for dabbing.
Shatter is one of the most popular forms of concentrate today. This is because it is easy to use and transport, and it tends to be very strong. Shatter is made by further purifying oil and eliminating all excess liquid until it forms a solid translucent sheet. This little sheet of concentrate can be broken off like peanut brittle into tiny pieces which are easily dabbed. You don’t have to worry about shatter leaking or to get sticky unless you leave it out in the heat. It can also be stored for longer periods of time than other concentrates because air can not pass through it and break down the active chemicals inside.
Crumble & Other Products
Aside from these common products, you are also likely to see crumble and a few other products in between. These names are mostly meant to indicate the consistency of the product itself, which will help you determine whether or not it can be dabbed or used for another purpose.
For more information about concentrates available in Glendale, you can view the Arizona Organix menu online today! We have some of the best organic concentrates on the market available in our store, and we are always bringing in new and exciting products as we discover them. You can find a full range of the best concentrates in whatever form you prefer with us.
Featured Image and Wax Image Provided By: Roxana Gonzalez/Shutterstock
Pull ‘ n’ Snap Image Provided By: Canna Obscura/Shutterstock
Crumble Image Provided By: Dogcan Susluoglu/Shutterstock
Shatter Image Provided By: Edward Esters/Shutterstock