Today, there are nine different categories of cannabis concentrates consisting of three different types of hashish, four different types of solvent hash oil, cannabis rosin, and cannabis distillate.
Although cannabis concentrates are no longer limited to hashish alone, it is still a popular form of cannabis consumption. There are two traditional forms of hash, each of them defined as solvent-less. Less technical terms refer to it as “hand rubbed” hash and “dry-sift” hash. A more modern form, called “bubble hash”, also exists.
Hashish that does contain solvents are known as hash oils. Quick Wash Isopropyl Alcohol Hash Oil (QWISO), Propane Hash Oil (PHO) and Butane Hash Oil (BHO) use a solvent to separate the trichomes from the plant material.
The last of the four types of hash oil is something called Winterized CO2 Hash Oil. Carbon dioxide, when placed under enough heat and pressure, attains a “critical” state. It begins to display the properties of both a gas and a liquid, which scientists refer to as a super-critical fluid. The compound is used to wash ground cannabis in order to separate the cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant material. This process produces a very pure form of hash oil, since it significantly reduces the potentially harmful solvent residue found in other forms of hash oil.
Cannabis rosin requires an entirely different method of production. Live cannabis buds or buds that have been dried and cured are pressed between two heated metal plates to produce two different products - called “live rosin” and “rosin” respectively. Afterwards, the resulting rosin is collected via a rosin press. Manufacturing cannabis rosin does not require the use of potentially harmful solvents. Therefore, cannabis rosin is one the purest, most potent cannabis concentrates available.
Last but not least, there is a method of distilling cannabis. Unlike alcohol, cannabis does not need to be fermented first, nor does it produce a liquid product. Instead, it produces a nearly pure form of THC powder, as pure as 99% THCa.
As you can see, the science of cannabis concentrates has come a long way since the early days of landrace cannabis strains and hand-rubbed hashish. However, what should consumers expect out of these new products? How much work goes into the production of each one? In order to answer these questions, we will need to delve into the pros and cons of each type of cannabis concentrate.