How Are CBD Oils Made?

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CBD oil offers numerous therapeutic benefits to its users. This special compound has existed for decades, and is only gaining more popularity with time. Whether you are using CBD oil for tension headaches or to calm down your anxiety, this compound has made life more manageable for thousands of people across the globe.

You may be wondering how this special substance is made. All CBD oils are made by extracting CBD from hemp plants using a solvent. However, this process is a bit more complex than in sounds.

Let’s take a look at the different processes involved with the production of CBD oil.

Growing and Cultivating the Hemp

CBD oils are made from hemp plants. These belong to the cannabis plant family alongside marijuana, but hemp contains less than 0.3% THC. As a result, consuming products made from hemp does not produce the psychoactive effects that consuming marijuana does.

Hemp plants take between 70 and 140 days to grow fully. Once this plant has produced flowers, they are removed and the CBD extraction process can begin.

CO2 Extraction Method

The CO2 extraction method uses carbon dioxide to produce an extract rich in CBD. In this method, carbon dioxide is first put under high pressure and low temperature conditions. These conditions liquify the compound so that it can be used for the CBD extraction process.

The liquid CO2 is then passed into an extraction tank containing hemp until it fills up. It then goes through a pressure release valve and a cyclone separator. This separates the CO2 from the oils from the plant, and pumps it back into the original CO2 tank. The separated CBD oil is then collected in a vessel below the cyclone separator.

Ethanol Extraction Method

The ethanol extraction method uses an alcohol solvent to extract compounds from the hemp. The solvent used for this purpose most frequently is ethanol, as it is believed to be safe for consumption. Ethanol possesses special chemical properties which enable it to extract many different compounds from plant matter. 

In this extraction method, the hemp is first heated up to decarboxylate the compounds it contains. The plant matter is then submerged in pure ethanol for a certain period of time. This produces a dark colored oil that contains many compounds in addition to CBD.

The dark color comes from the chlorophyll that was extracted alongside the CBD. Manufacturers can remove this chlorophyll from the final product, but the process may remove certain cannabinoids as well.

The ethanol extraction method is simpler and more affordable than the CO2 extraction method. The post-extraction processes may drive up production costs, but the final product should be as high quality as the ethanol extracted CBD oils when performed correctly. 

Hydrocarbon Extraction Method

Hydrocarbons are organic compounds that consist of carbon and hydrogen. They can be used as organic solvents for the extraction of different compounds. The hydrocarbon used for making CBD oil is butane.

This process begins by flushing cold butane into a vertical column via a solvent tank. The butane washes over hemp plant matter contained inside the column, and dissolves the cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant. The mixture of butane and hemp compounds are then collected or sent for further processing.

The hydrocarbon extraction method is relatively efficient and can be completed in an hour. This is in contrast to the 6 to 10 hours it takes to extract CBD oil using CO2. However, the drawback of using this method is that it sometimes leaves residue, which may get into the final product. Consuming products containing butane may damage the heart and brain, so the hydrocarbon extraction method may not be ideal for producing a safe end-product.

Making CBD oil at Home

It’s also possible to make CBD oil at home using cannabis flower, olive oil, and some kitchen supplies.

The first step is to decarboxylate your cannabis by placing it on a baking sheet, and putting it in the oven at 230°F for 20 to 30 minutes. You can remove your plant matter when it has started turning brown.

You should then choose a type of olive oil to use. Many people prefer to use the non-virgin variety as it doesn’t have a strong flavor and holds up well under high temperatures. Place a 50:50 mixture of olive oil and water in a saucepan and add your decarboxylated cannabis. Turn the heat on low and slowly stir the mixture.

Try to ensure that none of the plant matter is sticking to the bottom of the pan. You can gradually raise the heat over time, until the water reaches a boil. Once the mixture has begun to bubble, reduce the heat and keep stirring.

Allow the mixture to simmer for around 30 minutes, or until it looks like all the water has evaporated. Turn off the heat and allow the oil and plant matter mixture to cool down to room temperature.

You should then strain the mixture using a fine sieve or cheesecloth and place it into a sealable jar. Close the jar and place it in the fridge for a couple of hours. Any water in the mixture will settle at the bottom of the jar, while the CBD oil itself will harden and settle on top.

If you are using a flexible plastic container, you should gently squeeze the sizes to create an opening between the oil layer and the container’s sizes. Drain away the water and collect your CBD oil.

Where Can I Purchase CBD Products?

Making CBD oil at home can be a tedious task. If you are interested in trying CBD oil for migraines and other ailments, you should purchase it from a reliable seller such as Nothing But Hemp.

Nothing But Hemp is one of the leading suppliers of premium-quality CBD oils in the country.