How CO2 Extraction Works – A Beginner’s Guide
Ever wondered how our products go from beautiful flowering Hemp plants to potent, wellness-boosting CBD Hemp Oils? There are many different extraction methods that can be used, but the tool of choice for our manufacturing team is CO2 extraction. Read on to find out exactly How CO2 Extraction Works and why we use it.
What is CO2 Extraction?
CO2 Extraction uses pressurised Carbon Dioxide to extract desired compounds from raw materials.
It is widely considered as the safest, most effective, one of the most environmentally friendly, and also one of the most expensive methods of extraction.
As it leaves no chemical residues in the extract, it requires little to no further processing (depending on the product) to be safe for consumption.
Furthermore, its relatively low temperature means that delicate, bioactive compounds can be extracted without altering their natural composition. This makes it a popular choice for the food and supplement industries for products such as decaffeinated coffee, vitamins, and CBD Oil UK .
Unlike other extraction methods, it can be fine-tuned to determine the levels of specific compounds such as cannabinoids and terpenes.
It is considered a ‘green technology’ because it uses renewable CO2 which is often recycled with minimal release into the atmosphere.
But great technology comes at a cost. Setting up the machinery can cost around £100, 000, with the operational costs also being highly expensive.
How CO2 Extraction Works
The two main methods of CO2 extraction are Supercritical and Subcritical. Both of these methods involve a similar process, with the main difference being that Subcritical uses lower temperatures. Supercritical tends to be the most commonly used method for extracting cannabinoids.
The video below from devendra soman gives a good visual representation of how CO2 extraction works.
More specifically for CBD and cannabinoids, the process is as follows:
- Raw Hemp material is placed into an extraction chamber.
- Pressurised CO2 is pumped into the extraction chamber at the desired temperature.
- The CO2 dissolves the cannabinoids, terpenes and other compounds from the Hemp.
- The compounds are carried with the CO2 to a cyclonic separator.
- The pressure change inside the cyclonic separator causes the CO2 to rise and be collected back into the CO2 tank.
- The hemp extract descends into the collection vessel.
The end result is a potent, full-spectrum hemp extract that contains all of the wellness enhancing compounds that are naturally produced by the hemp plant.
So there you have it! We hope this article has made a complex process a little easier to understand. If you are interested in learning more about how our products are made, check out the following article: Seed To Sale – How Your CBD Oil Is Made.