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What Is The Best Solvent For Hemp Extraction?

August 28, 2019
Wholesale

With the increase in the number of people becoming familiar with the benefits of consuming CBD, the increase in the demand for its products is also increasing. Many companies are developing different ways to market CBD products. This has resulted in stiff competition between the manufacturers to produce high-quality CBD.  


Extraction is the method used to obtain CBD or Cannabidiol and other desirable cannabinoids from the hemp plant. The extracted product can then be produced into CBD products sold in the market such as salves, capsules, tinctures, topicals, etc. There are several solvent options to use in extracting CBD from the hemp plant. 


Here are different solvents used for CBD extraction:

Hydrocarbon Solvent – using this solvent is very complicated and highly meticulous. When used, it can produce a highly potent CBD extract. However, handling this requires a great skill level as it can be dangerous if handled incorrectly.

Hydrocarbons are hazardous and are subject to very strict regulations. Manufacturing companies would only be allowed to use and store a restricted amount of hydrocarbons which could limit the production. There is also a possibility of leaving traces of hydrocarbons in the extracted product.

Alcohol Solvent – using alcohol for extracting plant compounds has been around for a long time. Since the earlier civilizations, they use this to create herbal products to be used as medicines. When hemp is soaked in alcohol for a long time, it draws out CBD and other compounds.

Unlike the hydrocarbon option, using alcohol prevents the risk of traces in the extracted product. But then, using a strong liquid like alcohol may result in changing the plant’s biochemistry.

Water Solvent – recently, some manufacturers started using ice, water, or water vapor to draw out CBD and other cannabinoids from hemp. This is a low-cost option as it does not require complex machinery, however, because of this, the extraction time may be longer than normal. It could also be labor-intensive which is not ideal for upscale production of CBD products.

Olive Oil Solvent – this very easy to use and a good option for those who would like to try extracting CBD at home, it also eliminates the possibility of leaving toxic traces on the CBD; however, it produces very little amount of extract. And it also produces a cannabis-infused oil and not a pure extract.

CO2 Solvent – this method uses carbon dioxide to take out the important cannabinoids and terpenes from hemp. It is a widely used method not only for CBD extraction but also for other products like essential oils and removing caffeine in drinks. It is a versatile solvent that can produce different products with different pressure and temperature.


What is the best solvent to use for CBD extraction? Carbon Dioxide.

It is a clean extraction: 

In using CO2, you don’t need to evaporate it after extraction, unlike the other solvents. This will be time-consuming and the processes of evaporating it do not guarantee that it will remove everything. It does not leave any toxic residue or trace in the CBD.

It is also a natural sanitizing agent, which means that it is good at eliminating microorganisms that are not good for human consumption; a great option for producing pure and clean CBD extract.

It is safe and harmless: 

Many other industries have been using this for a long time to produce safe commercialized products used in food and drinks. There is no need to use harsh chemicals, the carbon dioxide can do it on its own.

Aside from being safe for consumption, it is also not dangerous to the environment and to the employees who handle it. Many incidents that happened on CBD extraction involves the use of hydrocarbon solvents like propane or butane. This situation is less likely to occur when using CO2. Unlike the other solvents, there is no need for a special fume hood for handling it.

It is cost-efficient: 

There is no shortage of CO2 use, even as we breathe, we exhale CO2. The process of using CO2 is a closed-loop cycle. After extracting CBD, all the CO2 used can be recovered and it can then be reused. This promotes an eco-friendly process and a cheaper extraction method with lesser production cost.

Using CO2 for CBD extraction is not only beneficial to the manufacturers because it is effective and efficient. What makes it the best is because it produces a clean extract without chemicals that are harmful to the body – a great benefit for the health-conscious consumers who use CBD for its many potential health benefits.


Eileen Reyes, Content Manager

Eileen writes with the motivation of making this world a better place, and has a passion for the hemp industry. She's spent 5+ years as a content creator who loves to paint and travel. If she is not at her desk writing, she can be found playing with her dog, Beebop.

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