CBD EXTRACTION METHODS2019-11-10T06:41:54+00:00

CO2 Extraction Method

The CO2 CBD extraction is one of the best depending on the end goal. This method is further sub-divided into three categories; supercritical, subcritical and mid-critical. C02 (carbon dioxide) is a gas but when heated and converted to liquid, it works like a natural solvent. The solvent is what breaks down the raw hemp biomass to eventually turn it into CBD.

Supercritical extractions are more efficient than sub and mid-critical for giving higher yields of CBD, however, the higher temperatures damage terpenes and other phytochemicals during the process. Subcritical and mid-critical consistent of less heat and remain more phytochemicals intact, however, less hemp is turned into pure CBD which lowers the yield.

The resulting solution is then passed through a separator where it is broken down into its requisite parts. While the essential oils and terpenes are delivered into a collection container, the supercritical gas is passed via a condenser where it is turned into a liquid. The liquid can then be used for another cycle of the process.


Purity: the CBD produced is extremely pure. C02 is also a non-toxic, natural substance so any leftover residue is considered to be fully safe for human consumption.

Effectiveness: Most food companies have used carbon dioxide as an extraction solvent and safe food ingredient for many years. The methods are perfected and predictable.


Expensive: The equipment is very expensive. The process can only be carried out in advanced and sophisticated labs.

Lower Yield There is also a lower yield than with ethanol extraction methods.

Ethanol Solvent Extraction Method

How an ethanol CBD extraction machine works.
This process works exactly as described, ethanol (highly purified alcohol) is used to separate and extract CBD from hemp biomass.

Although ethanol is ideal for the extraction of the full range of terpenes and cannabinoids, it may also extract chlorophyll. You can eliminate the chlorophyll by filtering the extract. However, this greatly reduces the oil’s potency. Although butane offers a stronger solvent than ethanol, it is more likely to contain contaminants that may interfere with the functioning of your lungs. For this reason, ethanol is the most commonly used solvent to safely extract CBD from hemp.

The result of this process after excess solvents have been evaporated is decarboxylated CBD crude oil. CBD crude oil can then be converted into CBD distillate and from distillate into CBD isolate through easy conversion processes.


Higher Yield: Solvent extraction methods have a higher yield of CBD per lb. of biomass than the C02 extraction method.

More Cost Efficient: Ethanol and solvent extraction is a cheaper process involving less sophisticated machinery than C02 extraction.


Dangerous: The solvent extraction method is more dangerous as the solvents used are highly flammable and combustible.

Solvent Residue: – There are some trace amounts of ethanol solvent left over in the finished product. These residue levels must remain under 0.5% to ensure the finished product is fit for sale.

Limited: Ethanol and solvent extraction is suitable for high yield CBD isolate and distillate but not for full-spectrum, essential oils and waxes since it damages phytochemicals and terpenes.

Quality Control

Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) is a system for ensuring that products are consistently produced and controlled according to quality standards. It is designed to minimize the risks involved in any pharmaceutical production that cannot be eliminated through testing the final product.

GMP covers all aspects of production from the starting materials, premises, and equipment to the training and personal hygiene of staff. Detailed written procedures are essential for each process that could affect the quality of the finished product. There must be systems to provide documented proof that correct procedures are consistently followed at each step in the manufacturing process – every time a product is made.