Making your own CBD oil at home is easy enough when you have the right ingredients on hand. The end product is by no means as powerful or effective as professionally extracted and professionally manufactured CBD oil (which is actually a fairly thorough and complicated process), but in a few simple steps you can still harness some of the power that the hemp plant can offer.
THE ADVANTAGES OF PRODUCING CBD OIL AT HOME
The CBD can be consumed in many forms, but oil is one of the most common. In general, people buy their CBD oil in health food shops or pharmacies, and depending on where you live, you may not have a choice. However, if you have far fewer options or want to avoid the cost of some store-bought products, you can use the viable option of making your own CBD oil at home. Yes, you read correctly: with a few hemp flowers, the right equipment and a few simple ingredients, you’ll have an excellent homemade CBD oil in no time at all.
WHAT ARE THE POSSIBILITIES OF MAKING CBD OIL AT HOME?
If you want to implement this option, you first have to decide which method you want to use. For amateurs, there are two options that are not too different from each other. There is one difference, however, and both methods have their advantages and disadvantages.
The first method requires the use of potable alcohol, which is used to extract CBD from the hemp plant material. The second option, which has become popular thanks to a gentle process, uses natural vegetable oils to extract the cannabinoid. Hemp seed, olive and coconut oils are very popular for this and are quite effective solvents.
You may have heard of a third extraction method at CO₂. It is true that due to its “clean” nature, extraction by CO₂ has become the industry standard for high quality oils in the CBD. It offers the most efficient, controlled and verifiable extraction currently available, but it requires extremely expensive equipment, a lot of space and extensive knowledge to ensure that it is carried out correctly. We therefore limit ourselves here to the other two options.
A NOTE ON VARIETY SELECTION
But before we talk about production, it is first of all in the foreground that we decide on the right variety. As many strains are nowadays selected for their high THC and low CBD content, you need to choose your strain carefully. If you want to hear our suggestion, we already have a few suitable varieties in mind. For example, varieties like Nebula II CBD are dominated by CBD, while others like CBD medicalMass have CBD: Both varieties are suitable options, so it all depends on your preferences. There are even strains with a very high CBD content that contains almost no THC.
MAKING CBD OIL WITH ALCOHOL
– Approx. 30 g ground flowers or 60-100 g ground, dried, shaken or cut flowers
– High-risk alcohol consumption
– Mixing bowl
– Baking tray
– Fine filter such as cheesecloth or sieve
– Collection container
– Bain-marie (a set of two pots/pans that can be stacked without touching each other)
– Wooden spoon
– Plastic syringe
To begin with, you need to make sure that your plant material is decarboxylated. To do this, you finely grind it until it has a homogenous consistency and place it on a baking tray which you place in an oven preheated to 110°C for one hour.
Place your flowers or decarboxylated ornaments in the mixing bowl and add enough alcohol to completely cover the plant material. Use the wooden spoon to stir the material for 5 to 10 minutes. During this time, the alcohol removes desired components such as CBD and terpenes. Stirring speeds up the process and loosens the trichomes that produce these substances.
Then you have to separate the CBD-rich alcohol extract from the plant material. To do this, pass the solution through a piece of cheesecloth or a fine sieve into a bowl. You will notice that the alcohol has taken on a dark green colour. Repeat this process several times with fresh alcohol to make full use of your buds or cuttings. At some point, the extract will appear lighter, which is a sign that the material has been exhausted.
It is now time to set up the water bath. If you don’t already have one, you can simply fill the bottom of a pan with water and place a stainless steel bowl that fits perfectly but does not touch the bottom of the pan.
Pour the alcohol extract into the stainless steel bowl/top of the water bath and gently heat it up. High-percentage alcohol is highly volatile and evaporates at low temperatures. Therefore, keep the heat at a low level and turn the heat source off and on again if necessary. It is important not to carry out this process near an open fire, so it should ideally be carried out under a fume hood or outdoors. The vapour produced during the evaporation of alcohol is easily flammable and represents a real fire hazard.
Stir the extract for 15 to 20 minutes while the alcohol evaporates. The mixture should become extremely thick.
Once all the alcohol has been removed, the extract should have a thick, tarry consistency. While it is still hot, you pull it out of a large syringe or several small syringes. This makes it easier to store and administer.
MAKING CBD OIL WITH CARRIER OILS
Approx. 28 g hemp flowers – Approx. 450 g carrier oil (hemp and coconut oil are best, but olive oil or other edible vegetable oil can also be used)
– water bath
– cooking plate
– baking paper
– jar with lid for storage
First, use your shredder to grind the hemp flowers to a fine consistency. The result should not be as fine as dust, but consist of very small, even pieces. You can also use a knife. But you will need more time and you will have to make sure that the individual pieces are regular. The fine, even consistency allows maximum extraction of the CBD.
Then spread the ground flowers evenly on a baking tray lined with baking paper, which you place in an oven preheated to 110°C for one hour. This triggers the decarboxylation process, which transforms the inactive CBDA into active CBD. The relatively low heat and the long baking time allow this process to take place without loss of terpenes. At the end of the cooking process, the flowers should be slightly brownish and brittle.
It is now time to mix the buds and the oil to start the extraction process. To do this, add the flowers and oil to the top of the water bath, fill the lower pot with water and simmer. Simmering is important because terpenes will evaporate if the mixture is heated above ~ 150 °C. This process takes about 2-3 hours, and the final product is brownish-green.
At this point, carefully remove the pot/bowl of your hemp and the oil from the heated water. Take your pot (or another airtight container of your choice), place your cheesecloth (or another filter of your choice) over the opening, and pour your mixture into the container. Make sure you have extracted as much oil as possible from the filtered hemp, then discard the flowers. Close the container and store it in a cool, dry place. You have just made a good amount of CBD oil. Although it is not as strong as oil made with an alcoholic solvent, you don’t have to worry about dangerous chemical residues and it will probably taste better too.
ADVANTAGES OF PROFESSIONAL CBD OIL MANUFACTURE
Now that we’ve talked about making your own oil at home, let’s compare it to the oil you can buy in a shop or online. The main difference, of course, is the method of extraction and filtration. Well-known CBD manufacturers (such as Cibdol) use CO₂ extraction instead of the methods described here to produce safe and high quality products. This process requires an expensive three-chamber processor, large quantities of flowers and a trained expert to oversee the process. However, using CO₂ supercritical for extraction leads to a product that is far more efficient and purer than any homemade variety. So if you are looking for a high quality oil, CBD oil extracted with CO₂ is the best choice.
MAKING CBD OIL AT HOME: THE QUINTESSENCE
Making your own CBD oil at home is not only a legitimate option, but also simple and effective. But will it be of the same quality as an oil that has undergone CO₂ extraction? Not really. And will it continue to be a safe quality product? As long as you follow our instructions exactly: absolutely!
That said, if you want to use CBD to help relieve certain ailments, Australian Seed Bank recommend that you buy a professionally extracted CBD oil. Commercially available products indicate the exact ingredients and their concentration (often in milligrams) and you will be able to buy oils that contain virtually no THC.