When it comes to CBD extraction methods, cannabis companies can choose to use CO2, hydrocarbon, microwave assisted processing (MAP), ethanol or even ice water in extracting cannabinoids and other compounds from cannabis plants. But which method is best? The truth is, it depends on the desired end-product.
While CO2 extraction is ideal for producing concentrates like hash oil, budder, and shatter, hydrocarbon and ethanol extraction methods are ideal for producing CBD oil. However, when it comes to producing high-quality CBD distillate, ethanol extraction takes the cake.
Ethanol extraction is the most cost-efficient method for large-scale operations, as it can produce large quantities of CBD at a low cost and requires a minimal number of intermediary steps. This method also allows for high-quality CBD to be produced in a short period of time.
Some of the cannabis companies using an ethanol extraction method to produce CBD are NextLeaf Solutions (CSE:OILS), StillCanna (CSE:STIL) (OTCPK:SCNNF), and Indiva Limited (TSXV:NDVA) (OTCQX:NDVAF).
While NextLeaf is focused solely on cannabis extraction, Indiva is a licensed producer that also owns a family of brands. Meanwhile, StillCanna is a vertically integrated cannabis company that offers a complete seed-to-sale experience.
What is Ethanol Extraction?
Ethanol is a colorless, flammable liquid that is the intoxicating agent in liquors and is also used as a solvent and in fuel. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) classifies it as “Generally Regarded as Safe,” meaning it is safe for human consumption, making it one of the most reliable options for CBD extraction if done correctly.
StillCanna uses food-grade ethanol to extract cannabinoid concentrates from hemp plants. Next, the CBD concentrate is purified by separating the ethanol and other undesirable substances like fats, waxes, lipids, solids, pigments, and chlorophyll. This process is called winterization as it involves freezing the concentrates to filter out the cannabinoids, which remain in liquid form while other undesirable substances like plant wax freeze.
The third step in the process is distillation, which is performed after the initial extraction to further concentrate and purify the compounds.
Once the extraction process is complete, companies will send CBD extracts to third-party laboratories to test the extract to ensure quality.
StillCanna: Refining the Extraction Process
Although ethanol extraction is the most cost-effective option for extracting CBD, it can require several steps that can make it labor intensive and inefficient, especially for large-scale production. That is why StillCanna enlisted the help of engineers who are experienced in fluid dynamics to refine the extraction process.
StillCanna has successfully developed a proprietary commercial-scale extraction system that utilizes food-grade ethanol as its extraction medium and produces large volumes in a short time.
This brand new method of refining and distilling cannabis down to a molecular level along with the company's custom designed and manufactured equipment allows it to produce a high-volume of consistent cannabis oil that meets industry requirement.
On top of that, StillCanna's extraction method also offers one of the lowest costs per gram for CBD extraction.
Being able to produce large quantities of high-quality CBD at a low cost is a significant advantage for StillCanna, as many companies fight for top spots in the burgeoning CBD market, which is expected to outpace the entire cannabis market.
As consumer demand for CBD continues to grow, more and more cannabis companies are jumping on the bandwagon. However, it will be companies like StillCanna that stand the test of time, as they have already got the process down to a T.
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