Cannabis oil. CBD-rich cannabis oil can safely be extracted using the methods listed here. As you may well know, CBD oil is made from hemp. Crude oil is extracted, refined and thoroughly tested – this is how Good Hemp’s pure CBD oil is made. Come learn how to easily make your own cannabis-infused oil, ready to use in medicated edible recipes, topical salves, or even enjoy straight on its own.
How CBD Oil Is Made
To extract CBD -rich cannabis oil, one must start with CBD -rich plant material. There are many ways to extract oil from the cannabis plant, each has its pros and cons. Some methods are safer and more effective than others. Cannabis oil made with neurotoxic solvents like butane and hexane may leave unsafe residues that compromise immune function and impede healing.
- CO 2 extraction. The supercritical (or subcritical) CO 2 method uses carbon dioxide under high pressure and extremely low temperatures to isolate, preserve, and maintain the purity of the medicinal oil. This process requires expensive equipment and a steep operational learning curve. But, when done well the end product is safe, potent, and free of chlorophyll.
- Ethanol. High-grade grain alcohol can be used to create high-quality cannabis oil appropriate for vape pen cartridges and other products. But this extraction method destroys the plant waxes, which may have health benefits that are favored by some product-makers.
- Olive oil. Extra virgin or otherwise, olive oil can also be used to extract cannabis oil. Dr. Arno Hazekamp, director of phytochemical research at Bedrocan BV , which supplies medical cannabis for the Dutch Health Ministry, reports this method is both safe and inexpensive, “You won’t blow yourself up making cannabis-infused olive oil.” However, cannabis-infused olive oil—whether CBD -rich or THC -dominant—is perishable and should be stored in a cool, dark place.
Medical patients swear by it. Researchers are intrigued by it. Government regulators are flustered by it. And investors are head over heels for it. But what exactly is CBD oil?
Vaporizer pens are a trendy and discrete manner to vaporize cannabis medicine. However, commonly used thinning agent in many products on the market are harmful when heated and inhaled.
Look for products with clear labels showing the quantity and ratio of CBD and THC per dose, a manufacturing date, and a batch number (for quality control). Select products with quality ingredients that are lab tested and safely extracted.
How is CBD Oil Made? The Process Explained
Here at Good Hemp, we’re all about transparency in everything we do – that way we keep ourselves honest and you can hold us accountable! We want the production process of our pure CBD oil to be as sustainable as possible so that the planet doesn’t have to suffer – but we know we aren’t perfect (yet) either.
Good Hemp Pure CBD Oil
250mg Citrus CBD Oil
250mg Natural CBD Oil
250mg Peppermint CBD Oil
Natural 1000mg CBD Oil
Natural 2000mg CBD Oil
For example, due to outdated and restrictive legislation, growing hemp in the UK is legal if you have a licence to grow it as a controlled substance, but the most valuable parts of hemp – the high-CBD leaves and flowers – have to be destroyed onsite.
That’s right. British farmers are allowed to grow hemp for the purposes of making hemp oil, hemp seed hearts, construction materials… but not CBD oil.
That’s why at the moment the hemp we use for our pure CBD oils is derived in the USA, where the extraction of CBD oil from hemp leaves and flowers is permitted. We’d like to improve our supply chain, however, to rely less on hemp being shipped across long distances – so we’re hoping that the UK government changes their restrictions ASAP. The pictures below are of our farm in Devon where we grow hemp for seeds and fibre, however not CBD. But hopefully they give you an idea of what the growing and processing of hemp looks like!
How Our CBD Oil is Made Today
Today, we do what we can to keep our CBD oil production process as sustainable as possible while we focus on producing a 100% natural and pure CBD oil product. Not a single fertiliser, insecticide or toxic chemical is involved in the growth of our non-GMO hemp, and the thorough CBD extraction and testing process ensures that we get the strength, contents and dosages of our CBD oil products just right every time.
Join us as we walk you through the journey our hemp goes through from seed to CBD.
1. Soil prep
At the very start of the hemp growing process the soil is prepared through the process of tilling; drainage lines are installed to help increase yield by ensuring that the soil doesn’t become saturated. The dirt is then broken up with approximately 12-18” deep grooves that the seeds will be sown into.
Between annual hemp cycles, a different crop is grown in the same area so that the soil doesn’t become exhausted of one particular set of nutrients. This reduces the need for synthetic fertilisers when growing other crops, and as hemp cleanses the soil, it’s a crop-rotation favourite.
Around March, when the frosty weather has passed, seeds are sown into the grooves that have been made in the soil. The sowing is done by machines, and the results are quick: seeds will typically show signs of growth in as little as 24 to 48 hours, with plantlets growing to be two feet tall after four weeks’ time!
Again, no fertilisers, insecticides or any other form of chemical fortifying is required for our natural hemp to cultivate. The natural rain water and the condition of the soil are sufficient for steady growth and great plant health.
The growth cycle for hemp flowers is around 6 months (it’s less for seeds), which means that they can be harvested around August/September time. The cultivation process of our hemp is fairly easy, as the sturdy naturally adjusts to changes in the weather and environment (god it’s good…)
Much like Goldilocks’ finickity standards, for hemp to be harvested correctly, the conditions have to be juuuuust right. It can only be completed once the plants are fully grown, the yummy hemp seeds have been harvested, the conditions are dry without any excessive humidity or rain, and sacrifice has been made to the hemp gods. Ok we’re joking about the last one, but you get the jist – it’s not easy.
Head hemp farmers will monitor these requirements closely and choose the right time to harvest them. This is done by a funky type of combine harvester which has a huge crop wheel at the top, collecting the leaves and flowers, and a lower component which slices the 3m tall hemp stems at the base. The stems are collected separately and used for their fibre, while we steal the flowers and leaves for CBD.
Once it’s been harvested, the hemp is dried and in a temperature- and humidity-controlled environment. Depending on its quality, the hemp is either selected for cannabinoid extraction – the final product being our pure CBD oil – or sold to be used as a herbal tea.
6. Testing for CBD quality and contamination
Next the graded hemp material is tested for quality, purity and overall safety. This includes testing the dried material for cannabinoid content, mould and toxins or any other unwanted compounds. If the test results come back as we want them, the material is put forward for CBD extraction.
7. Supercritical CO2 extraction
The CBD extraction starts with the ‘supercritical CO2 extraction’, in which pressurized carbon dioxide (CO2) is used to pull the entire profile of cannabinoids, waxes, fats and terpenes from the hemp plant. This CO2 extraction process doesn’t require any solvents, which means it’s a very clean process. The supercritical CO2 extraction results in a full-spectrum extract, from which the cannabinoids will be refined further to create CBD isolates.
8. CBD extraction
By using distillation methods, all controlled substances – including THC and other unwanted compounds – are removed from the crude oil to leave a broad-spectrum hemp extract that’s free of THC. Next, the extract is further refined to a pure CBD isolate through an isolation process called reverse chromatography (RC). RC totally isolates the CBD with hardly any contaminations, ensuring that the CBD oil you buy contains 99.9% pure CBD.
9. HPLC testing
This is where it gets very science-y. You’ve been warned.
To ensure that the CBD remains pure and the isolation has been successful, it’s tested thoroughly through a fancy-sounding process called ‘high-performance liquid chromatography’ or HPLC. This involves a pressurised liquid solvent containing the CBD sample being pumped through a column filled with a solid adsorbent material. As each component of the sample interacts slightly differently with the absorbent material and exits at different flow rates, the HPLC process will separate and identify each of the compounds of the original CBD sample. The result? A clear and precise overview of the exact value of CBD and any other molecules present.
10. Final formulations
Once our pure CBD has been tested for purity and quality, it’s time to make the final formulations. Each of our CBD products is mixed with organic, cold-pressed hemp seed oil to, creating a range of strengths (based on the ratio of CBD to hemp seed oil). On top of that, our peppermint- and citrus-flavoured oils are infused with clean, steam-distilled, plant-derived terpenes that give them their delicious flavour and aroma.
11. Testing by third-party laboratories
The last stage of testing that our CBD oil undergoes is typically on the final formulations. Each batch we produce is meticulously tested by third-party laboratories for its cannabinoid content to ensure that the purity and quality remain accurate to each strength and ratio.
Once all lab reports are returned satisfactorily, the CBD oil is ready to be packaged and labelled, ready to be shipped off to you guys!
You can find our full range of CBD drops, starting at £15, here . To read more about CBD, what it does and why it’s great, head to The Spill .
At Good Hemp, we want to make the benefits of CBD oil available to all. Whether you use CBD to relieve the symptoms of anxiety, depression or pain , we’ve got your back. We take pride in producing pure CBD oil that comes with all the benefits to your health and wellbeing without any of the unwanted side-effects, artificial compounds or harm to the environment.
How to Make Homemade Cannabis Oil (or CBD Oil)
Are you interested in making your own cannabis-infused oil? I don’t blame you! Making homemade cannabis oil is a great way to create a highly healing, concentrated, and versatile cannabis product. It is ready to use in edible recipes, topical salves, or even enjoy straight on its own. Especially if you use organic homegrown cannabis like we do, this is an excellent way to use up any extra or “fluffy” stuff too. It also happens to be very easy to make cannabis oil at home!
Follow along with these step-by-step instructions to learn how to make homemade cannabis oil. We’ll also briefly discuss the science behind cannabis oil, and what types of cannabis to use to make oil. Finally, we’ll go over various ways to use homemade cannabis oil, including some notes about caution and dosing with edibles.
What is Cannabis-Infused Oil
Cannabis oil is made by lightly heating (and thus infusing) cannabis in a “carrier oil”. Cannabinoids like CBD and THC, the most active components in cannabis, are both hydrophobic. That means they don’t like water, and are actually repelled by water molecules. On the flip side, CBD and THC are both fat-soluble. They like to bind with fatty acid molecules – such as those found in oil. When cannabis is steeped in oil, the THC and CBD molecules leave the buds or plant material and become one with the oil instead.
A wide variety of oils can be used to make cannabis oil. However, coconut oil and olive oil are the most popular and common. Coconut oil and olive oil are both pleasant-tasting and very nourishing for skin, making them versatile options for either medicated edibles or topical applications. Plus, they both have strong natural antifungal and antimicrobial properties. This helps prevent mold and extends the shelf life of your cannabis oil. Coconut oil is higher in saturated fat, which may bind fat-loving cannabinoids even more readily than olive oil.
Hemp Oil, CBD Oil, THC, or…
Your choice! You can make cannabis-infused oil with hemp or marijuana, depending on what is legal and available in your area. Or, what you’re desired end-results are. Hemp oil will only contain CBD (or a very minuscule amount of THC), while marijuana-infused oil will likely contain both THC and CBD. The ratio and concentration of THC and/or CBD depends on the strain of marijuana and particular plant it came from.
Generally speaking, THC is psychoactive and CBD is not. But THC does a lot more than change your state of mind! Studies show that THC has even stronger pain and stress-relieving properties than CBD, which is known to help with insomnia, seizures and inflammation. While they each have notable and distinct stand-alone benefits, an oil or salve containing both CBD and THC has the highest potential for a wide array of health benefits (albeit illegal in some places). Known as the “entourage effect”, the synergistic combination of both THC and CBD through whole-plant cannabis consumption and extracts is more powerful than either one on its own.
I personally like to use strains that are high in both THC and CBD to make oil and salves. To learn more about the differences between strains, CBD and THC, see this article: “Sativa, Indica & Autoflowers, the Differences Explained”.
Why Make Cannabis Oil
Cannabis oil is the foundation ingredient for ultra-healing homemade topical lotions, ointments, and salves – my favorite way to use it! Both THC and CBD have excellent anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties. Studies have shown that cannabinoids have the ability to reduce acne, fine lines and wrinkles, soothe redness and irritation, and balance natural skin oils. Also, cannabinoids (THC especially) are analgesic – meaning they reduce pain. I regularly use our homemade cannabis salve on my knees, ankles, and other aching or inflamed joints and muscles.
Furthermore, making cannabis oil is one of the most reliable ways to create medicated edible cannabis products. Even so, it is extremely difficult to determine the exact potency of homemade edibles or cannabis oil. Because of this, it is suggested to consume with caution in very small doses at first. Cannabis oil can be consumed on its own, or added to other edible cannabis recipes. (I personally prefer to make homemade cannabis tinctures over edibles.)
On the other hand, simply chopping up weed to add to your brownie mix is not a good idea, for many reasons. As we already explored, cannabinoids are fat-soluble. That means that they not only bind with oils during the infusion process, but also that cannabinoids are more readily absorbed and digested in our bodies when they’re consumed with fat – such as oil. If you add raw cannabis to baked goods, it is less likely that the cannabinoids will bind to fats for a consistent and effective edible experience. Using decarboxylated cannabis to make cannabis oil further increases precision and consistency.
Using Decarboxylated Cannabis for Oil
The cannabinoid compounds found in raw cannabis (THCA and CBDA) are not the same as those found in cannabis that has been heated – such as those inhaled (THC and CBD) when you ignite or vaporize cannabis, or when cooking with cannabis. The process of heating and “activating” cannabis is called decarboxylation. It is what makes cannabis psychoactive, and also more potent for medicinal applications.
Yet when it comes to heating cannabis, it is best to do so low, slow, and methodically. There are time and temperature “sweet spots” where raw THCA and CBDA are converted into active THC and CBD. But without a precise process, over-heating or under-heating cannabis can lead to uneven activation of THC and CBD. Even worse, it may even destroy the THC or CBD altogether!
The content (activation or decomposition) of THC with time and temperature. Note that CBD takes about 2x as long at the same temperatures. Graph courtesy of 420 Magazine
Most cannabis oil recipes call for cannabis that has already been properly decarboxylated first. The most common and fuss-free way is to decarb cannabis in the oven, and then add it to oil over a very low heat afterwards – avoiding further decarboxylation. Some folks choose to decarb their raw cannabis on the stovetop simultaneously with the oil infusion process. However, that requires significantly more careful monitoring to hit that time-temperature sweet spot (and not ruin it).
Therefore, our cannabis oil recipe calls for decarboxylated cannabis as well. I provide very brief instructions on how to decarb raw cannabis below, but you can read further information about exactly how and why to decarb cannabis in the oven in this article.
1 cup of loosely ground decarboxylated cannabis. To be more precise, I suggest to use a kitchen scale to weigh out approximately 7 to 10 grams (a quarter ounce or just over), depending on your tolerance.