Several techniques are available for the extraction of CBD oils and each method guarantees different levels of purity. Two of the most popular CBD oil extraction techniques are ethanol extraction and CO2 extraction, which respectively use ethanol and supercritical CO2 as solvents.
Understanding The Ethanol Extraction Method
In ethanol extraction, carbon atoms are removed from the plant material by heating it and after this process of decarboxylation, the plant material is soaked in ethanol for a particular amount of time. Once the soaking time ends, the liquid is separated from the plant matter and is left in an open china dish to let the ethanol evaporate.
Ethanol is very effective in removing chlorophyll from the CBD oil but this filtration will reduce the potency of the CBD oil. Removal of the whole ethanol content from the CBD oil too requires additional filtration reducing the potency of the CBD oil further.
Ethanol extraction forms esters that are water-soluble, thereby increasing the bioavailability, which is a desirable feature of CBD oils. Since ethanol is an alcohol obtained from grains, you can be confident about its organic nature.
Analysis Of CO2 Extraction
The point when CO2 has the properties of a gas as well as that of a liquid is called supercritical state, and CO2 in this state is used in CO2 extraction. In order to convert CO2 to supercritical state, it is cooled to below -69 and then a pressure of 75psi is applied on it. The supercritical CO2 is then fed into the chamber containing plant material and after the terpenes and trichomes in the plant material dissolve in it, CO2 is sent through a separator. What the processes leave behind is pure CBD oil.
Selective extraction of compounds is possible by adjusting the heat and pressure, offering better control over the purity of the CBD oil. CO2 extraction has its downfalls like the possibility of formation of carcinogens if the plant material is not dried beforehand. Advanced equipments are required for CO2 extraction increasing the cost of the extraction method and it is not effective like ethanol extraction method in removing chlorophylls.
Which Is The Best Method?
Each extraction method has its merits and downfalls and it is wrong to conclude that one method is better than the other. The choice of an extraction method depends on the expected quality and quantity of the CBD oil.