As legal medicinal and recreational cannabis markets continue to spread and evolve, the world of concentrates is exploding. Cultivators are pushing the envelope in a bid to bring interesting, enjoyable, and effective new products to an eager market, which makes this an exciting time. Still, for many consumers in newly legal markets, the idea of cannabis still brings to mind the flower itself — and not much else. Today, MYNT is shedding a little light on the topic with these four truths about cannabis concentrates.
The term “concentrates” is self-explanatory — it refers to a concentrated form of a cannabis extract. People are often surprised at the myriad of extracts, all of which have their own names and are classified as concentrates. When you hear a budtender here at MYNT referencing crumble, sap, shatter, or sugar, for example, they’re talking about concentrates. Across the category, consistency varies significantly, which is often indicated in the name.
You may have preferences when it comes to extraction methods, solvents used, and consumption methods, which will help steer you in the right direction when you’re comparing different concentrates. Then again, you may have no idea about any of it, and that’s fine too! A good budtender can quickly bring you up to speed about how a particular concentrate was manufactured, how it’s consumed, and what kinds of effects you can expect, so don’t hesitate to ask.
That concentrated form of cannabis means a much more potent product than the flower itself. Percentages of THC in particular are often much higher, hovering anywhere between the 50% and 80% range, and in some cases up to the 90s. That means not all concentrates are appropriate for novice consumers. That potency in a CBD concentrate, on the other hand, can be exactly what you need when you’re seeking relief from pain and inflammation and looking for an alternative to traditional pain medications.
Part of the appeal of cannabis concentrates lies in its varying methods of consumption. You can find concentrates that are intended for use in equipment like vape pens or dab rigs. Other concentrates are taken sublingually, ingested, or used topically. Again, your preferred method of consumption and desired effects will help you zero in on the right concentrates, so plan to share that information with a budtender if you’re looking for recommendations.
Cannabis flowers have their unique terpene profiles to thank for those signature scents and flavors. But terpenes themselves are delicate compounds that often can’t survive the extraction process, which can result in a concentrate that’s noticeably lacking. Cultivators have methods to counter this scenario, including the re-introduction of terpenes after extraction. For the highest quality concentrates, these terpenes should be derived from the cannabis strain itself, instead of food-grade terpenes that mimic those of a given strain. After all, everyone wants a pure, potent, flavorful product!
If you’re ready to dive into the world of cannabis concentrates, you have options. A good budtender should ask specific questions designed to help narrow things down based on the effects you’re hoping to achieve and the methods of consumption you’re open to trying. As with all things cannabis, a bit of trial and error will probably be in order. Pay attention to the experience of different concentrates, and have fun with the process!