The CBD industry is starting to look a lot like the beer-making industry in the sense that consumers are looking to create their own concentrates at home. For some, home distilling is a hobby very similar to home brewing. For others, the desire to create CBD distillate at home is more about having total control over cannabinoids, terpenes, and so forth.
If you have been wondering whether you can make your own CBD distillate at home, you can. Just know this: doing so is neither easy nor cheap. Just as a homebrewer has to invest a lot of time and money in order to produce a high-quality beer, creating the best possible CBD distillate requires a similar investment.
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Distillate Is a Concentrate
The first thing to understand is exactly what a CBD distillate is. For all intents and purposes, it is a concentrated oil extracted from a cannabis plant. If the plant in question is industrial hemp, the primary cannabinoid will be CBD. If you are talking marijuana, THC will be the primary cannabinoid.
Cannabis processors create CBD distillates through a multi-step process that involves decarboxylation, extraction, winterization, and distillation. Of the four steps, extraction is the most complex and costly. You have four options for extraction:
- CO2 extraction
- Hydrocarbon solvent extraction
- Natural solvent extraction
- Steam distillation.
Each method requires its own equipment. If you are okay with steam distillation, you need little more than the equivalent of a home chemistry set and a few common kitchen tools.
Investing in Equipment
If you are looking at either of the three remaining extraction processes, you will have to invest in some expensive equipment. CedarStoneIndustry is one example of a company that manufactures and sells CBD extraction equipment. However, the Houston-based company works mainly with commercial clients. You would have to find a supplier that carries equipment for home extraction.
If you don’t want to go the steam distillation route and you cannot afford expensive equipment, there are some workarounds using common things you already have in your home. Just know that you will probably not end up with a high-quality concentrate.
Check State and Local Laws
You should also check out state and local laws before you attempt to create your own CBD distillate. If you are working with industrial hemp, you at least have the advantage of the plant being legal to possess and cultivate across the country. However, you may be subject to local ordinances restricting how you can extract and distill CBD oil at home.
Producing a distillate from marijuana is an entirely different ballgame. At this point, there are still thirteen states that consider marijuana illegal in all forms. Of the remaining thirty-seven, all have medical programs in place and eighteen allow for recreational marijuana use.
Be aware that just because your state allows either medical or recreational cannabis does not necessarily mean that it’s legal to create your own CBD distillate at home. State law may limit the amount of plant material you can possess. It may prevent you from growing your own marijuana.
Deciding If It’s Worth It
The point of explaining all of this is to say that, even if you can make your own CBD distillate at home, doing so may still not be worth it. You may think it is. You may be the type of person who thrives on this sort of thing. You find the process fascinating and entertaining.
On the other hand, you might not appreciate the time, effort, and financial commitment. If that is the case, you are better off buying a concentrate instead.