CBD isolate and distillate have become increasingly popular throughout the hemp and cannabis industry. These versatile hemp extracts are the most commonly used when it comes to manufactured goods for personal consumption such as topicals, edibles and vapes. Extracts are what give a majority of products on the market their great cannabinoid profiles. While these products are similar in many ways, there are major differences between isolates, distillates and crude for both consumers and businesses. To experience these differences for myself, for research purposes, I spent an evening dabbing both isolate and then distillate to fully understand the effects of each one.
The most common alternative to CBD isolate when it comes to hemp products is distillate, which extracts as a yellow-amber honey like liquid. High quality distillate is often extremely viscous and has a light golden color to it with no taste or smell. This source of CBD is made by distilling crude oils that are generally extracted using solvents such as carbon dioxide or ethanol. Distillate is great for manufacturing products because it becomes liquid when heated and can be added to drinks, tinctures, and myriad of other finished goods. CBD distillate comes with either a broad spectrum or a full spectrum of cannabinoids. The difference between these terms is the THC. Broad spectrum distillates have all of the same compounds, except that the THC has been removed. This is monumental for consumers who are interested in the entourage effect without the risk of ingesting THC. Because of this, THC free distillate is generally the most expensive CBD derivative available.
I made an experiment to test the entourage effect by first taking a dab of CBD isolate, waiting an hour, then taking a dab of distillate. The isolate gave a smooth hit with a subtle sweet taste to it. It left me feeling refreshed, almost like taking a deep breath of air when you wake up outside in nature. There was no head or body high, but it left me feeling content. The dab of distillate was an extremely different experience. I took a dab of broad spectrum distillate, meaning there was ZERO THC. The golden liquid melted and left a strong floral taste in my mouth. While it is not comparable to a THC high, the distillate left me feeling extremely relaxed and calm. A slight head high can be felt, but not strong enough to be impairing. After doing this experiment I completely support the entourage effect theory.
Cannabidiol isolate is the most refined form of hemp available. This compound comes from further processing CBD distillate. CBD is an amazing compound for many people, but with cannabis prohibition still in effect in many areas, people can not risk using hemp products with a full spectrum of cannabinoids due to the potential of THC being present. Even if the full spectrum hemp distillate has under .3% THC, there is a small chance this could make you test positive for THC, risking your job or benefits. This is where CBD isolate shines; even if the product contains 0% THC, people can still feel a high after consuming. With isolate, there is absolutely zero cannabinoids besides CBD and it is safe for people whose jobs drug test for THC. There is also no “high” associated with using CBD isolate which is useful for people who need to medicate throughout the day without being impaired. Other than THC, CBD is by far the most commonly sought after cannabinoid. Isolate is a perfect additive to increase the CBD content of products without increasing THC levels and keeping products compliant. It is also possible to make water soluble isolate which is monumental for manufacturing drinks and liquid based products.
CBD distillate is an amazing material to add to hemp products because it captures the entourage effect, something that CBD isolate cannot compete with. The entourage effect is the theory that all cannabinoids work together and are increasingly beneficial when they are consumed together. This means they increase the effects of CBD or THC, which are the most sought after molecules when it comes to extraction. The entourage effect is important for a complete holistic hemp product. Consumers often pay much higher prices for products that contain a full spectrum of cannabinoids instead of only CBD which has caused the price of distillate to be generally higher than isolate.
2 parts distillate to 1 part pentane (by weight) is probably an ok starting point. For a 2:1 ratio you are correct though. 40 kg of distillate is about the max. 40kg of distillate to 20kg pentane (32ish liters of pentane) = 70 some liters total.
CBD distillate being produced on B/R Instrument’s 9200 spinning band system.
If you want to grow large single crystals you will need a modified process. Some steps would include much slower temperature changes, fewer seeds crystals/nucleation points, and a less saturated solution.
CBD distillate with 70 – 75% CBD content can be crystallized to produce CBD isolate (crystals) with a 90+% purity or higher.
Set the bath to 5 °C. Slow the stirring. As the solution cools it will become more viscous. Adjust the stirrer to keep the RPM above 120. CBD crystals will spontaneously form or “crash out” of the pentane solution. Keep reducing the temperature to at least -10 C. What temperatures you use and how they change over time can change the growth of the crystals.
You really need to only use weights rather than volumes. Volume is temperature dependent so the conditions of your lab or how you run your process can really change the values.
1) Wash the raw crystals with cold (probably around -40 C) pentane on a vacuum filter
2) Crush/Grind the crystals finely
3) Use a vacuum oven to gently purge more solvent
4) Flip the crystals in the vacuum oven to expose any trapped surfaces and continue the purge until tests indicate no pentane.
There are many studies and clinical trials exploring the effects of CBD. In our modern age, it is certainly becoming a topic of interest on an international scale.
CBD is not psycho active, as mentioned previously. This means it will not get you high. This is great news for people who desire the benefits of marijuana without the side effect of getting high or stoned.
USES AND RESEARCH BEHIND CBD
People use CBD in many situations. Most often, CBD is a preferred treatment for patients with anxiety, neurological or psychological issues, epilepsy, tumors, pain, and inflammation. The stories people report after using CBD are nothing short of miraculous.
Even without THC, CBD still may have some beneficial properties. It may work as a pain reliever, for example. Or, it may be used for relaxation, sleep, stimulating appetite, anti nausea and vomiting, or as a muscle relaxant.
Not all cannabidiol (CBD) is made the same because when it comes to full spectrum vs regular CBD, many people may be unclear exactly what the difference is. To understand the difference between full spectrum and regular, isolate CBD, and you will be able to choose the product that best suits your needs.