decarboxylation: the activation of cannabinoids

Have you ever poured yourself a cup of tea, then sat and watched as the herbs began to seep into the water, making it darker and releasing a pleasant aroma? While making a cup of tea is a simple task, something truly extraordinary is happening in your mug. Intelligent compounds are being extracted from the tea leaves and into the water. These compounds have the ability to interact and communicate with your body on a physiological level.

The compounds in hemp get activated in a similar way. Let's take THC for instance, the cannabinoid responsible for its high inducing effects. It's well-known that THC requires heat to produce any sort of therapeutic effects in the human body. And just like with THC, if you’re looking to reap all the health benefits of CBD, some form of heat activation is necessary.

Cannabinoids such as THC and CBD are originally synthesized by cannabis as acids. They’re known as THCA (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol acid) and CBDA (cannabidiolic acid). In fact, it may come as a surprise that raw cannabis doesn’t naturally synthesize high amounts of the bioavailable CBD that we all know and love. Initially, cannabis produces just one “mother cannabinoid”, known as CBGA which, over time, turns into the acid precursor to cannabinoids we are familiar with like CBDA.

These acidic cannabinoids are thermally unstable and must be decarboxylated with exposure to heat. After the hemp plant has naturally synthesized CBGA into CBDA, the plant must be heated in order to change the molecular structure of its acid form into the bioavailable CBD. During extraction processes, this is referred to as decarboxylation.

Decarboxylation is a crucial step in the efficient production of the major active cannabinoids in cannabis. As stated, these cannabinoids don’t occur in significant concentrations in cannabis but are formed through the decarboxylation of their corresponding acids. In scientific terms, the cannabinoids are losing a part of their molecular chain.

cbd extraction

How does Pachamama decarboxylate its hemp?

To provide you with the cleanest CBD products possible, we’ve adopted innovative and sustainable methods to produce all of our full spectrum hemp extracts.

Traditional extraction methods can take anywhere from 45 minutes to 2 hours to perform the decarboxylation process. The long exposure to heat and chemicals can damage therapeutic compounds, drastically lowering their potential. At Pachamama, our solventless extraction method performs the cleanest and quickest decarboxylation process of any extract. The cannabinoids in our hemp get activated in under two seconds, using only heated air and pressure. This process is specifically designed to preserve the integrity of our hemp’s beneficial compounds by ensuring that it is never over-exposed to heat or chemicals.

To learn more about the unique methods we utilize, check out our process by clicking here.

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