What exactly makes cannabis plant oil natural? Cannabis extraction experts, Pure5 delve into the way cannabinoids naturally produce their colours.
Over the past few years, the legislation for cannabis has become favourable and hundreds of farms have started growing the cannabis plant in its two main forms: Hemp for CBD and Marijuana for THC. As a result, there is a growing number of new brands emerging. Due to its exceptional popularity, you can find countless CBD/THC products that will all vary in quality, appearance, aroma, and consistency. The question at large is what exactly makes cannabis oil natural?
What are the components of cannabis plant oil?
What is cannabidiol?
Cannabidiol is a natural compound that is found in the Cannabis Sativa plant. Cannabis Sativa is the type of flowering plant in the cannabis genus from which we get both hemp and marijuana. CBD is one of over 100 cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. It is extracted and mixed in all types of products in different states and concentrations.
What is tetrahydrocannabinol?
Tetrahydrocannabinol stands for delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol or Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ-9-THC). It is a cannabinoid molecule in marijuana (cannabis) that’s long been recognised as the main psychoactive ingredient—that is, the substance that causes people who use marijuana to feel high. THC is just one of more than 400 different active substances and 60 different cannabinoid molecules contained in marijuana, although THC is the most recognised.
What are terpenes?
Terpenes are organic compounds that provide the aroma and flavour in cannabis and a variety of other organisms, including plants. Terpenes influence its effects by interacting with cannabinoids. Terpenes are formed inside cannabis trichomes, and their relative presence is directly affected by both the spectrum and intensity of light exposure.
Terpenes do more than provide flavour and aroma. They also support other cannabis molecules in producing desired effects. This is called the entourage or ensemble effect, and it’s the reason these aromatic compounds have become such a critical area of cannabis plant research.
How does cannabis oil work?
THC works by attaching to the body’s cannabinoid receptors, which are found throughout the brain and nervous system. THC can be detected in the body much longer than most other drug compounds (up to 20 hours after ingestion), although the psychoactive effects only last for a few hours.
THC is also stored in body fat and organs for three to four weeks. Hair follicle testing may identify THC after even longer periods, around 90 days. Urine testing is often used but is an unreliable method of detection.
Where does colour come from?
Where does the colour in cannabis reside?
There are four different parts of the cannabis plant which are capable of producing marvellous colours, including calyxes, pistils, leaves and trichomes
Calyxes make the buds. Cannabis plantbuds are a combination of several hundred calyxes piled on top of one another, and some, or all, of them, can become a colour aside from green. It is the calyxes that provide the most colour in your buds. It takes a few purple calyxes to provide a red/purple ‘tint’ for example. When you look through a magnifying glass you will see the colourful pieces throughout the sample. The greater the number of colourful calyxes, the more vibrant the colour of the bud.
The pistils, or hairs, that stick out of cannabis plant buds often turn orange, red, purple or pink, even if the buds and leaves stay green. After the buds are dried, they retain some of the pistil colourings, and you’ll also see some of the colour looking to get through beneath the buds.
In certain strains, the buds stay green while the cannabis plant leaves change colour. The result is a stunning plant, but as leaves tend to be trimmed after harvest, you won’t see much of the colour on the buds. The buds can remain the same while the leaves turn purple, for example. This phenomenon can happen when your plants are exposed to low night-time temperatures. The leaves exposed to light turn purple while those in the shade don’t change colour.
Experienced growers often use the ‘trichome’ method to determine when a crop is ready for harvest. Using a magnifying glass, they know that clear trichomes mean the plant isn’t ready. If the trichomes are milky white, the cannabis plant is at its highest THC content and prime for harvest. If the colour changes to amber or yellow, you must harvest immediately, and the weed will provide a mellow high.
What causes the colours to change?
During the lifecycle of the cannabis plant, the leaves go through changes creating phytochemicals for various reasons which give plants their colour, anthoxanthins (white/cream), carotenoids (yellow/orange), chlorophyll (green), lycopene (red), and anthocyanin which make up the vibrant purple and blue colour in plants. Each of these compounds play a unique role in the cannabis plant’s life, as well as its survival.Yellow strains, such as Lemon Kush, thrive in more alkaline conditions. Similarly, as the chlorophyll fades, if the cannabis plant is genetically predisposed for yellow pigmentation, the golden hues may come out later in the plant’s life, as well. If a cannabis plant has a lower number of anthocyanins, it may produce yellow, gold, and earthy hues from carotenoids, pigmentation molecules also present in carrots, autumn leaves, and tomatoes.
Reddish strains are harder to come by but can be bred by manipulating nutrients and depriving the cannabis plant of phosphorus. The darker, even black appearing strains are caused by an excess of pigmentation in the cannabis’ leaves. These strains are also known for more intense visuals and psychedelic highs. They usually thrive in somewhat cooler temperatures, since in warmer environments the dark, deep reds and purples may become lighter.
What are flavonoids?
Anthocyanins and anthoxanthins belong to the flavonoid group of phytochemicals. Flavonoids are one group of a larger family of chemicals called polyphenols. Flavonoids are commonly found in fruits, vegetables, cereals, teas, and nuts. They are also abundant in the cannabis plant, along with two other types of compounds we have discussed: cannabinoids and terpenes.
Besides giving plants vibrant colours, anthocyanins are also thought to have certain health benefits. According to Khoo et al., “Scientific studies, such as cell culture studies, animal models, and human clinical trials, show that anthocyanidins and anthocyanins possess antioxidative and antimicrobial activities, improve visual and neurological health, and protect against various non-communicable diseases.”
Flavonoids, including anthocyanins, have been reported to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Anthocyanins could potentially provide a wealth of benefits. They may play a role in protecting the heart and liver, improving vision, as well as helping to prevent obesity and diabetes.
How to determine if a cannabis plant product is high quality?
There is more than one answer to the question relating to the aroma, colour and consistency of a cannabis plant product. The most important to a product quality is stress caused by the process of extracting and isolating the ingredients. The most natural processes will not stress the botanicals during any of the stages of processing and will maintain the natural components and colours to repeat the original cannabis plant.
For certain, when you buy a bottle of whisky from a local department store the meaning of “natural” colour is well known and established. When you buy a cannabis plant product, people usually look for clear colours which are more likely chemically altered and bleached colours instead of the strain-specific natural pigments.
It is impossible to determine the concentration or quality of cannabis oil by simply looking, smelling, or tasting a product. PURE5TM have been embracing their own patented technology for gentle extraction delivering the natural pure appearance of the extracts with high natural potency, without heat oxidation, chemical alteration, or loss of vital components. The oils look natural, and the flowers extracted do not change their appearance as fragile they are.
What makes PURE5 unique?
Making your extraction strain-specific requires a full understanding of the flower, the solvent and the process involved. Using well-grown strains, extracted at room temperature with our extremely inert solvent that does not alter the original components is the most pristine way of extracting the plants.
In the last 6 years, PURE5TM Extraction produced the best strain-specific oils extracted with their proprietary developed non-flammable and most safely selected modified hydrocarbon method utilizing R134a removing the full spectrum of terpenes and cannabinoids in their acid and converted forms. The process known as the PBXTM (Pure Botanical Extraction) achieved large customer recognition in vapes, tinctures, dabs, and isolated terpene markets.