On a search for a more sustainable way to extract cannabinoids from the raw hemp plant, Essentia Scientific created their patented water-as-solvent technology that produces high purity pharmaceutical grade cannabinoids, including the rare offerings of acidic cannabinoids, such as CBDA and CBGA. Their proprietary process leverages water to leach cannabinoids from the plant without the use of harsh chemicals, heat, or hydrocarbons. The process also successfully rejects contaminants such as pesticides, heavy metals, microbial, and mycotoxins; while effectively removing or limiting the amount of THC, yielding a more consistent and compliant product.
There are many advantages to utilizing water as the solvent when extracting cannabinoids from the raw hemp plant. Traditional extraction methods utilize harmful solvents such as butane or ethanol for extraction, having an array of consequences that have impact on manufacturers, consumers, and the environment.
When utilizing solvents like butane or ethanol for extraction, remediation is necessary to rid the final product of volatile solvents. However, the techniques and solvents traditionally used tend to not discriminate against most pesticides, fungicides, or herbicides. Instead, the process tends to concentrate these compounds in the final extract or concentrate leaving trace amounts in the final product for consumers to ingest. In the long term this can lead to an array of health concerns for the consumer, including kidney, liver, and brain damage. In order to assist in the recovery or elimination of these volatile solvents vacuum distillation is often used. The problem with these methods is when cannabinoids are exposed to heat, decarboxylation occurs, converting the cannabinoids from their acidic to neutral form. The process does not fully rid the final product of all harmful residual solvents. Additionally, dehydration of the plant is often required for efficient extraction prior to adding the solvent, causing the conversion of the cannabinoids to begin decarboxylation prior to extraction. By utilizing water as the solvent Essentia Scientific can forgo these processes allowing for the extraction of the rare offerings of high purity pharmaceutical grade acidic cannabinoids, such as CBDA and CBGA, on a mass scale.
There is a need in the industry for a simple and inexpensive extraction process, and Essentia Scientific’s patented water-as-solvent technology delivers just that. The process does not require equipment that is typically expensive that uses high temperatures or pressure to accomplish the extraction of cannabinoids. The process also eliminates the use of expensive organic solvents which are potentially harmful and polluting, bringing not only a more cost-effective option to the market, but also one that is more environmentally friendly. When utilizing a solvent such as butane, pressurized butane is passed through the plant material in order to extract the cannabinoids from the plant. Residual solvents evaporate from the concentrate under a vacuum and are then typically released into the atmosphere. Attempts are often made to recycle the butane, but are not 100% effective, and hydrocarbons are released into the atmosphere causing environmental harm. Water is a true inorganic solvent that will not release harmful chemicals into the environment, creating a safer and more sustainable way to extract cannabinoids from the raw plant.
When infusing cannabinoid-based products, taste is an important factor for both manufacturers and consumers. Concentrates from standard extraction technologies typically have a robust plant flavor that is difficult to infuse into edible products and are most commonly in a solid form making it difficult to add into cannabinoid-based product applications and accurately dose the extract. With their water-as-solvent technology Essentia Scientific’s extractions are odorless and tasteless, able to be easily infused into cannabinoid-based applications and their clearly soluble products are truly water-soluble. Their clearly water-soluble extracts fully dissolve in water forming a clear and transparent solution. Nano-emulsions or liposomes form colloidal suspensions, creating sediment in the final product. When mixed with water the clearly water-soluble solutions form a true solution where the solvent and solute consist of a single phase, not separating overtime. The water-based extraction process produces a thermally stable cannabinoid inclusion complex that rapidly dissolves into any cannabinoid-based aqueous formulation, remains stable over time, and the flowable microcrystalline powders are easy to dose and handle.
With a team that has over 100 years of combined chemistry experience, global solutions provider of hemp derived extracts, Essentia Scientific, is leading the industry to cleaner cannabinoid extraction with their patented water-as-solvent technology. The proprietary process produces a safer, more sustainable, consistent, and affordable output of high purity pharmaceutical grade cannabinoids, and allows for the extraction of the rare offerings of acidic cannabinoids at a mass scale. They provide the market with a much needed, cleaner option for cannabinoid extraction both manufacturers and consumers will benefit from.