There are various processes used to produce CBD isolate from industrial hemp extracts, such as supercritical carbon dioxide (CO2) or ethanol-based extractions. The same extraction methods can also be used as a starting point for the production of THC isolate as well, but typically with marijuana plants instead of industrial hemp. To create an isolate, a number of components are removed from the plant, including other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids, as well as fats, lipids, and other compounds. After that, the CBD compound is separated from the rest of the extraction through a series of chemical washing and separation processes.
Once all of the impurities and solvents are stripped away, you’re left with 99% pure CBD crystalline.
Following the mainstream emergence of cannabidiol (CBD) products, there’s a compelling option out there for those who want to experience the potential therapeutic effects of CBD without even the smallest trace of THC. It may not receive the same amount of hype as CBD lattes, infused cookies, or other CBD products, but CBD isolate is actually one of the most distinct and versatile forms of CBD on the market.
CBD isolate is a crystalline solid or powder that contains 99% pure CBD. A traditional extraction process removes all the active compounds from the cannabis plant. Then, a refining process that strips away all other phytocannabinoids, including THC, and any plant matter. What remains is the CBD chemical compound in its purest form.
Depending on the process, the resulting product is either large CBD crystals or a fine white powder that resembles confectioner’s sugar. While there may be a slight residual cherry flavor, neither form of CBD isolate should contain a distinct odor or taste. But don’t be fooled by its plain appearance — there are actually a number of reasons to get excited about CBD isolate and all that it has to offer.
While you might not know what to do with a pile of odorless CBD isolate powder at first, there are a number of different ways to consume CBD isolate. Here are some of the most common delivery routes:
As we’ll discuss in detail below under How to Use CBD Isolates, another clear-cut advantage is the many inventive ways CBD isolate can be prepared for use. Whether it’s administered sublingually or mixed with food and drinks, this crystalline powdered CBD works well in a variety of consumption methods.
To highlight the purity of isolate, the second most concentrated form of CBD is distillate, a broad spectrum oil that is around 80 percent or more cannabidiol. While distillate is also considered a concentrate, other plant compounds remain in the final extraction.
All CBD products fall under one of three categories: full spectrum, broad spectrum, or isolate. Full spectrum CBD contains all other naturally occurring plant compounds (minor cannabinoids, terpenes, etc.), including less than .3 percent THC. The addition of THC is thought to enhance the overall effectiveness of the hemp oil.
However, not everyone wants THC in their CBD. The closest one can get to full spectrum and still be THC-free is broad spectrum. These oils contain all the same compounds found in a full spectrum product, but without THC.
Why Choose a Powdered Concentrate
THC free products may not be desirable to some CBD users, but are preferential to others. The limited amount of THC in hemp extracts will not get CBD users high, but consistent use of full spectrum or broad spectrum CBD may result in a failed drug test (Broad spectrum oils can contain an indeterminate amount of residual THC). Unlike broad spectrum oils, you can be certain an isolate is completely THC free, so it is the best option for consumers who want to avoid psychoactive ingredients or are concerned about drug testing.
CBD isolate is completely void of any other plant compounds, including THC. And unlike full and broad spectrum oils, isolate is a solid.
Isolate is pure CBD available. Purity is desired by the pharmaceutical industry because it is easier to measure the effectiveness of a lone compound vs. multiple active ingredients working with or competing against each other. The only federally legal CBD drug, Epidiolex for childhood epilepsy, is made from isolate.
CBD isolate is the purest form of cannabidiol available, around 99 percent CBD. The extract transforms from an oil into a white powder at the end stages of the refining process. CBD isolate is popular due to its versatility, ease of use, and because it is the only CBD product that is guaranteed THC-free.