If you walk into a dispensary, half the products lining walls are concentrates, with names like wax, shatter, oil, live resin, and distillate. Most of these extraction processes require dangerous solvents, which pose a risk to making them, as well as consuming them. But there is one which does not. Welcome cannabis live rosin, the solventless concentrate.
Recently, products like cannabis concentrates and extracts have become very popular. From delta-8 THC, the newer form of THC which has less psychoactive effect, and a clear-headed high, to live rosin solventless concentrate, a powerfully strong and cleanly made concentrate, there are plenty of options. In fact, we’ve got some of the best delta-8 THC for you to get in on the world of new-age cannabis products.
What are cannabis extracts?
The cannabis plant is made of many constituent parts. There are cannabinoids like THC and CBD, terpenes, flavonoids, chlorophylls, and tons of other constituent parts, many of which we are not as interested in when considering cannabis and its effects. It’s perfectly fine to consume the plant in whole form in whatever consumption manner is preferable, and for millennia, this has been the main way of ingestion. Only recently have we had the ability to take specific parts out of the plant, and make products of these enhanced components. And that is essentially what a concentrate is.
It’s a product of extraction or distillation, in which a particular part of the plant is taken out, by whatever means are used, to create a condensed, and therefore much stronger, form. So, for example, a CBD concentrate is nearly pure CBD which has been extracted from the entire plant. And shatter is an extraction that distills the THC into a powerful condensed version, with few other plant materials still present.
Cannabis concentrates can be made in different ways, most of which use a solvent of some kind. These can vary in how dangerous they are, how quickly they work, and how effective they are. When making marijuana concentrates, the general options for solvents are:
- Hydrocarbon solvents – These are petroleum derivatives which can dissolve substances, and are used for many industrial consumer products. Examples of hydrocarbon solvents include propane, butane, and hexane. These solvents are known for being highly flammable, and working with them can be dangerous if not done under the correct conditions, with the correct safety precautions taken. These are also highly poisonous, so any extraction using a hydrocarbon comes with the added possibility of having leftover solvent still in the finished product.
- Non-polar solvents – These are solvents that don’t have separation of charges (called a dipole moment), meaning evenly distributed charge, and no partial positive or negative charge. This makes them different from polar solvents, which have partial charges and are electronegative. Polar solvents are used mostly for polar compounds, which cannabis is not, making non-polar the better solvent for cannabis concentrates over polar. Non-polar solvents are used to dissolve non-polar substances like, oils and fats. Examples include ethyl alcohol, liquid C02, and hexane. If you’ll notice, hexane is both a non-polar solvent, and a hydrocarbon. While using alcohol as a solvent is pretty safe, hexane is more dangerous as a hydrocarbon, and C02, which was labelled safe by the FDA for industrial extractions only, still carries some danger.
What is live rosin
Obviously, there are plenty of options for concentrates made using solvents. However, regardless of safety claims by companies trying to sell products, many people would prefer to err on the side of caution, and stay away from toxic chemicals. And this leads us to live rosin, a solventless cannabis concentrate.
So, what is live rosin, and what does it mean to be a solventless cannabis concentrate? First off, the ‘live’ is a term that refers to concentrates made from frozen fresh cannabis, or very freshly harvested plants. Though the term might seem counterintuitive, the meaning is that it preserves different aspect of a live plant. The term ‘rosin’ refers to concentrates made using solely heat and pressure, like if a hair straightener was used, or a T-shirt press. Rosin itself implies the lack of a solvent, as no outside material is used to extract a part of it.
Making live rosin is not as simple as putting the ‘live’ and the ‘rosin’ together, though. Simply taking frozen plants and smashing them down with a heated hair straightener, can result in burning off desired plant constituents like terpenes and cannabinoids, since the water frozen into the plant will boil out, along with these molecules. This would make the whole idea pointless as it would degrade the overall quality of whatever product was being made.
In order to make live rosin without burning out the most desirable parts, the first step is to create ice wax (also known as bubble hash, and water hash). Ice wax is made of the glandular trichomes of a cannabis plant, that have been separated from the plant by agitation while in a cold state.
How to make live rosin
Ice wax is created using bubble bags of different sizes, with filter screens measured in microns, which filter the material. These bags generally come in 1-5 gallons, and the filters vary in size which means that different filter sizes are effective for different sized trichomes. While fresh frozen cannabis is optimal for this process, it isn’t actually necessary, and dried buds work as well. The main necessity is that it be high quality cannabis. Ice wax is best when produced very quickly as the faster it happens, the fewer constituents like terpenes and cannabinoids are lost.
The process goes something like this: bubble bags are put in buckets, starting with the bag which has the filter with the smallest microns, and going in order to the largest, with one bag inside of the next. The next step is for layers of cannabis and ice to be alternately put in to fill the bucket almost to the top, with the remaining space filled with cold water. All of this sits for at least five minutes so that trichomes can get brittle and cold, and then the bucket is agitated by stirring the contents, making the trichomes break away from the plant, where they become suspended in the water.
It’s important not to stir too much, as the more the mixture is stirred, the more the plant material comes apart. For this reason, agitation time can be as little as just a couple minutes. After this, the top bag with all the plant material and ice, is pulled out of the bucket so that the water can drain out through the filter into the next bag. This first bag can be washed again if desired, but can also just be set aside after being drained. The rest of the bags are then also pulled and drained, one by one. As the water drains out of the bags, a layer of golden colored trichomes can be seen on the filters. The trichomes can be rinsed off to wash away impurities.
To get the trichomes off the filter screen, something like a butter knife is used, and the trichomes are put on a 25-micron screen that sits on a towel. It should stay like this, in a clean and ventilated location, until it’s dry. Once this is done, it should be stored in an airtight container. The ice wax can be kept in this form, or grated to the consistency of brown sugar. It can be sprinkled on joints, dabbed, used in a hash pipe, or be used to make live rosin concentrate.
Once you’ve got super high quality ice wax (since only high quality, fully meltable ice wax can be used), you can finish the process of making live rosin. The ice wax goes into a filter bag where both a low temperature and pressure are applied. What comes through the filter should be a very strong and pure concentrate. In fact, a gram of live rosin can go for over $100.
Buy yourself some live rosin products
If the idea of super high-potent live rosin, and solventless concentrates of cannabis, sound good to you, then there are products you should check out. Live rosin isn’t quite as common as other concentrates, but there are plenty of companies putting out live rosin options, with many more to come in the future.
- Papa’s Select – Papa’s Select is a subsidiary brand of Papa & Barkley, a well-known name in plant-based medicine. The live extracts company is based out of California, and takes ‘full melt’ seriously, producing the highest quality bubble hash and live rosin products, however, not all products are available for purchase outside of California currently.
- Nokhu Labs – This is a Colorado-based company specializing in solventless concentrates, and uses a mix of old-school pressing methods along with modern touches, to produce chemical-free products through chemical-free procedures. The company uses the highest grade cannabis flowers, and puts out a full-spectrum live rosin made from fresh frozen cannabis.
- Blue River Terps – A terpene company based out of California and Florida, Blue River looks to have no impact on the environment, creating concentrates without “chemicals, organic solvents, gases, flavor additives, or fillers.” The company’s Flan product is made from refined live rosin using advanced mechanical separating techniques, and can be used in vapes or dab rings.
- CAMP – Based out of Missouri, CAMP is a cannabis extract company that produces a line called Live Solventless Hash Cartridges, as well as a Stargazer line and a Happy Camper line. The company also produces completely solventless rosin coins.
- Happy Valley – This company is based out of Massachusetts and prides itself on consistency of products, accurate product labeling, and solventless extracts. Their highly potent rosin is the product of proprietary filtration methods applied to their whole plant ice wax.
- Green Dot Labs – Another Colorado company that produces both live resin and live rosin solventless concentrate. This company uses solvents as well, but has a signature live rosin line in its Black Label extracts. The company takes great pride in creating exclusive and rare concentrates from its own cannabis genetics collection.
- gLeaf – As a Maryland based company (which also operates out of Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Ohio) that came from a group of entrepreneurs and activists who helped shape Maryland’s medical cannabis laws, its no wonder that gLeaf produces high level products. The company puts out many products including rosin.
- Jungle Boys – This California company has been in business since 2006, and has a line of concentrates including live rosin solventless concentrate, and sift rosin batter. Anyone looking for a very high-quality full-melt hash should look no further than this company.
The world of solventless concentrates is starting to get bigger, thanks in part to consumers who want cleaner products, and producers who want to leave less of a footprint on the earth. Cannabis live rosin solventless concentrate represents a new age of cleaner concentrate production, and more powerful products.
Hi, you made it to CBDtesters.co, your best internet location for the most relevant cannabis-related news globally. Keep up with us every day to stay on top of the exciting world of legal marijuana, and sign up to receive our newsletter so you never miss a single story.
Live Resin – The Cold Cannabis Concentrate
Fresh Frozen Cannabis – Using Cold to Boost Flowers and Concentrates
DIY: How to Make Delta-8 THC at Home
The CBD Flowers Weekly newsletter (your top resource for all things smokable hemp flowers). What is Delta 10 THC?
The Delta 8 Weekly Newsletter (All you need to know about Delta 8 thc), the Best Delta 8 THC Deals and the Best Delta-10 THC deals.
Disclaimer: Hi, I’m a researcher and writer. I’m not a medical professional, I have no formal legal education, and I’ve never been to business school. All information in my articles is sourced from other places which are always mentioned, and all opinions stated are mine, and are made clear to be mine. I am not giving anyone advise of any kind, in any capacity. I am more than happy to discuss topics, but should someone have a further question or concern, they should seek guidance from a professional in the relevant field for more information.