1. Extraction: The first step is to extract the cannabinoids and terpenes from the cannabis plant using a solvent such as butane, CO2 or ethanol. This produces a crude oil that contains a mixture of cannabinoids, terpenes, and other compounds.
2. Winterization: The crude oil is then mixed with ethanol and placed in a freezer overnight. This causes the waxes and lipids to solidify and separate from the oil, which is then filtered to remove the impurities.
3. Decarboxylation: The filtered oil is then heated to a specific temperature to activate the cannabinoids through a process called decarboxylation. This converts the non-psychoactive acidic cannabinoids, such as THCA and CBDA, into their psychoactive forms, such as THC and CBD.
4. Distillation: The decarboxylated oil is then placed in a short path distillation apparatus, which uses heat and vacuum pressure to separate the different compounds in the oil. The distillation process separates the cannabinoids and terpenes based on their boiling points, creating a highly concentrated, pure form of THC distillate.
5. Testing: The final step is to test the THC distillate for purity, potency, and contaminants. This ensures that the product is safe for consumption and meets legal requirements.
THC distillate is a versatile and potent form of cannabis oil that can be used in a variety of products, including vape cartridges, edibles, and tinctures.