Are you just beginning to get into CBD for its health benefits? If so, you are not alone. The legalization of hemp cultivation in 2018 created an entire market that, even now, is still emerging. Consumers are turning to CBD to help with everything from insomnia to aches and pains. However, many do not understand that not all CBD products are the same.
In addition to different product formulas, CBD extracts can differ quite a bit. CedarStoneIndustry is a Houston company that manufactures the CBD extraction equipment that processors use to generate the CBD oil that goes into making a full array of consumer products. Company officials say that processors have multiple options in terms of the extracts they produce.
There are three primary categories of CBD oil created through extraction and distillation:
- Full-spectrum CBD
- Broad-spectrum CBD
- CBD isolate.
Within these three categories, processors can develop multiple CBD profiles. Those profiles can then be applied to consumer products like lotions and creams, tinctures, soaps, and even vaping liquids. The foundation of it all is CBD extraction.
1. Full-Spectrum CBD
The one thing all three categories of CBD oil have in common is the initial extraction process. CedarStoneIndustry says the three most common forms of extraction are steam distillation, solvent extraction, and CO2 extraction. All three processes result in a full-spectrum CBD oil.
Full-spectrum extract contains everything the process pulls out of plant material. It includes more than a hundred cannabinoids along with terpenes, flavonoids, vitamins, and minerals. A full-spectrum CBD oil is essentially a pure CBD oil. It is everything the plant has to offer. It should be noted that full-spectrum CBD contains at least some THC.
2. Broad-Spectrum CBD
Once CBD oil has been extracted from plant material, it can then be separated into its individual components. Why do this? To remove those components the processor doesn’t want in the final product – which brings us to broad-spectrum CBD, a CBD extract from which all THC has been removed.
From a purely technical aspect, broad-spectrum CBD contains everything except THC. But in a practical sense, this is not always the case. Processors looking to introduce new products to market are constantly looking at different cannabinoid and terpene profiles. They may take a broad-spectrum oil and remove all but three or four cannabinoids. They might then modify the terpene content in order to achieve a specific taste.
What they have done is take a broad-spectrum extract and refined it further. But since there is no category for such an extract, it still falls under the broad-spectrum umbrella. The THC has been removed but it still contains multiple cannabinoids and terpenes.
3. CBD Isolate
The final category is exactly as its name implies: pure CBD in isolated form. Processors take the original full-spectrum CBD oil and separate all of the individual components. Then CBD is captured by itself. It is used to make all sorts of health and medical products separate from all of the other cannabinoids and terpenes found in the cannabis plant.
It should be noted that processors can start with pure CBD and then add certain terpenes back in to create unique taste profiles. In addition, the industry is just beginning to investigate whether or not terpenes bring more to the table than just flavor and odor. Perhaps they have some health benefits as well.
As someone new to CBD, it would be wise to educate yourself as much as possible. Just remember that not all CBD products are the same. Staying on top of things will be to your benefit.