Know Your Concentrates: A Brief Breakdown of Popular Cannabis Concentrates

With a wide variety of concentrates on today’s market (with many nicknames for each variety), it can be hard choosing the concentrate that best fits your cannabis preference. To help you along the way, I’ve taken a comprehensive look at the different concentrates produced, where in RI you can find them and how you should use them.

Kief

canna Kief copyKief refers to the resinous glands, or trichomes, found on the marijuana flower. These glands contain cannabinoids and terpenes, the oils that give different strains their distinctive scents. Kief can easily be collected by grinding the flower in a 3-chambered grinder or on a larger scale by sifting with a silk screen.

How to use it: Mix with flower in a bowl, joint or blunt to increase the potency of your product; infuse into butter or cooking oil to make edibles; press into hash

Where to find it: Summit Compassion Center (Warwick)

Hash

canna Hash copyHash, or hashish, is made from trichomes that have been compressed or water-purified. Water purified hash, or bubble hash, is resinous in consistency and lighter in color. Bubble hash is made by agitating trim or flower in ice water, pouring the solution through mesh bags, and then drying the hash collected in the bags. Compressed hash can be made with kief or bubble hash, and is generally darker in color and solid. Heat and pressure are applied to create the product.

How to use it: Mix with flower in a bowl, joint or blunt to increase the potency of your product; infuse into butter or cooking oil to make edibles

Where to find it: Greenleaf Compassionate Care (Portsmouth), Summit Compassion Center (Warwick)

Ice Wax

canna Ice Wax copyIce wax is made almost identically to bubble hash, with the exception that the plant matter being used is fresh frozen (ie, frozen immediately after harvest). You can freeze the plant matter for at least a day and up to a week or two (any longer and you risk rupturing the trichome heads, destroying the flavor profile). While making the ice wax, the key is to keep the product at 40°F or below. Ice wax is also known as a solvent-less wax, which refers to its oily amber appearance and its ability to be dabbed, like shatter or wax.

How to use it: Mix with flower in a bowl, joint or blunt to increase the potency of your product; infuse into butter or cooking oil to make edibles; press into hash; dab with an oil rig; use in a concentrate specific vaporizer

Where to find it: Greenleaf Compassionate Care

Butane Hash Oil

canna Shatter (BHO) copyAlso known as shatter, wax, crumble, dabs or honey oil, BHO is perhaps the most popular form of concentrate these days. The trichomes are stripped from the plant using butane and then purged to form a clear golden product. If the solution is agitated during purging, it creates a harder opaque product known as crumble. Similar to the relationship between bubble hash and ice wax, using fresh frozen material during butane extraction creates live resin.

How to use it: Dab with an oil rig; use in a concentrate specific vaporizer; infuse into butter/oil for cooking or topicals

Where to find it it: Currently unavailable at RI centers

Rosin

Rosin is the newest type of extract, despite being one of the easiest to make. Using heat and pressure, the resin is separated from the flower and can be dabbed or vaporized like BHO or ice wax. Novice concentrate enthusiasts can make it at home with just a few simple tools: a hair straightener, a piece of parchment paper and some flower. Many consumers are choosing rosin over its solvent extract cousins due to the preserved flavor compounds and the eliminated risk of any residual hydrocarbons like butane, hexane or propane.

How to use it: Dab with an oil rig; use in a concentrate specific vaporizer; infuse into butter/oil for cooking or topicals

Where to find it: Greenleaf Compassionate Care (Portsmouth), Thomas C. Slater Center (Providence)

CO2 Oil

CO2 oil  is made using supercritical fluid extraction, which is a method that is used to make many products, such as decaffeinated coffee or essential oils. The process allows the extractor to be very selective, which is why it has become very popular with cannabis. The ability to isolate different cannabinoids and terpenes means the consumer can purchase the flavors and compounds they want and omit the ones that they don’t. CO2 oil is most commonly found in pre-loaded disposable vaporizer pens, but can also be dabbed, used in edibles and infused into topicals.

How to use it: Oil vaporizer pen, infuse into butter/oil for cooking or concentrates

Where to find it: Thomas C. Slater Center (Providence)

Hash Oil

canna Hash Oil copyAlso known as Phoenix Tears, Rick Simpson Oil or RSO, this extract was pioneered by a man named Rick Simpson in the early 2000s for cancer treatment and has quickly become popular with the medical cannabis community. Hash oil is made with high proof ethanol (typically Everclear), and reduced to a thick black oil. Many medical marijuana cancer patients take large quantities of hash oil in efforts to combat cancer cell growth; however, it can be used for a variety of ailments. Hash oil can be taken orally, in capsules and infused into edibles and topicals.

How to use it: Take sublingually; infuse into butter/oil for cooking and topicals; make capsules

Where to find it: Summit Compassion Center (Warwick); Thomas C. Slater Center (Providence)

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