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What Is Cannabis Distillate?

Does the term “marijuana distillate” leave you scratching your head? If so, it shouldn’t: If you’re familiar with modern vape pens, there’s a good chance you’ve already tried them! A popular cannabis concentrate commonly found in vape cartridges, this cannabis oil—often called “distillate THC”—is a potent, flavorful, and pure way to access beneficial cannabinoids such as THC and CBD. 

But if this process of THC distillation is used to create the familiar vape cartridge, that’s not to say it’s ordinary! By carefully adding strain-specific terpenes to marijuana distillate, manufacturers can recreate the intriguing flavors of top strains in a powerful, shelf-stable, and appealing format. In today’s post, we’ll explore the world of THC distillation and the many uses for this fascinating, high-tech product.

What Is Cannabis Distillate? An Introduction

In its simplest form, marijuana distillate is super-concentrated cannabis oil. What’s more, the process is chemically simple and pure. While other concentrates are extracted using solvents or heat, distillate THC undergoes what’s known as a “short-path distillation process” that strips it of any terpenes, waxes, flavonoids, extra cannabinoids, impurities, and other plant matter. What is left behind is a unique cannabis oil that can reach astounding purity levels of over 99% THC or CBD. Unlike other concentrates such as wax or shatter, distillate—especially the pure and extensively lab-tested products we offer at our Green Goods shops—is clean and free of residual solvents.

Right after extraction, when marijuana distillate is in its purest form, the resulting cannabis oil is typically clear, flavorless, and odorless. But as you might imagine, this doesn’t exactly make for the most interesting vaping experience. That’s why most distillates are infused with terpenes—the flavorful and aromatic compounds that give different cannabis strains their specific characteristics—to enhance their flavor. Distillate THC is often infused with strain-specific terpenes in order to give it the flavor of a specific strain. 

Cannabis Distilation

How Is Distillate THC Made?

In order to produce distillate, cannabinoids are extracted, winterized, isolated, processed, and filtered. As we hinted earlier, there are several important characteristics of a pure distillate. Wax, fats, lipids, chlorophyll, and other extraneous plant matter is carefully removed, leaving a colorless and odorless extract high in cannabinoids such as THC and CBD. This process, by which oil is extracted from the cannabis plant, is called winterization.

After this first step, the oil is frozen. Why? The cold temperature encourages any remaining byproducts to coagulate and separate from the oil. The purified oil is then decarboxylated—a process that typically involves the application of gentle heat—in order to activate those beneficial cannabinoids. Finally, the precious oil is run through a short-path distillation process. In essence, this step applies vacuum pressure and heat to separate any remaining cannabinoids from the bulk of the cannabis oil. 

What you’re left with is an exceptionally clean cannabis oil designed to maximize both purity and potency. And again, because no solvents are required during the extraction or production processes, you can be sure that a marijuana distillate will be free of any potentially harmful toxins, chemicals, or other impurities. 

How is Cannabis Distilation Made?

How to Use THC Distillate

Another major advantage of marijuana distillate is its sheer versatility. As you might imagine, the most common and ubiquitous way of consuming it is by vaping it. Many simple vape pens and vaporizers designed especially for vaping concentrates are just the thing for consuming distillate THC. If you’ve ever purchased pre-filled vape cartridges or vape pens in a Green Goods dispensary, you’ve used distillate yourself!

That said, the use of distillate isn’t merely confined to vape cartridges. Just like any other concentrate, it can also be dabbed out of a specialized dab rig. If you’ve never interfaced with one of these devices, it’s a purpose-built device designed for delivering controlled doses of cannabis concentrates. Because they demand care and a little experience, we typically recommend dab rigs for more experienced cannabis users. You can get up to speed on their use with our introductory article.

But that’s hardly the end of the distillate story! Marijuana distillate can also be ingested orally. In fact, because of its relatively neutral flavor profile and shelf-stable nature, distillate oil is commonly used to make edibles, cannabis capsules and soft gels, and other such products. 

Distillate can be eaten raw or added to any number of liquids or foods for easier ingestion. This can be a real problem-solver for medical cannabis patients, or others who need to access a precise, consistent, and long-lasting dose of cannabis to address specific symptoms and conditions. 

Additionally, distillate can also be used sublingually by simply placing a proper dose under the tongue. Because of the many receptive blood vessels located there, dosing it in this manner will allow the effects to kick in much quicker than if the distillate is merely swallowed.

Marijuana Distillate: In Conclusion

We hope today’s post gives you insights into how you can access all the benefits of the cannabis plant in this convenient, economical, potent and shelf-stable format.

Are you ready to try distillate THC yourself? We invite you to explore our menu of pure distillates as well as products made from distillates at your nearest Green Goods shop. Do you have other questions about marijuana distillates or their use? Don’t hesitate to reach out; we’re always here to help!