Botanical Extraction

Extracting Fresh Cannabis with Hydrodynamic Methods

Written by Riley Kirk

Cannabis extraction techniques have evolved with the industry. Extractors are searching for the most productive, efficient, green, full-spectrum methods to keep up with the demand. One of the newest techniques brought into the cannabis world by the company iaso™ is a process that involves producing nanoemulsions with fresh plant product. Founded in 2015, iaso introduced the concept of hydrodynamic extraction with PhytoX™ at the Terpenes and Testing World Conference in 2018. The process involves taking fresh Cannabis plants to produce droplets of oil suspended in water, aka nanoemulsions. The goal of developing this new extraction technique was to overcome common obstacles in Cannabis extraction such as consistency, efficiency, bioavailability, and safety.

The first way that this extraction method is unique lies in the utilization of the fresh plant. This allows the terpenes and cannabinoids to be extracted from fresh trichomes and reduces the amount of waste and human labor costs involved in the preparation of product.

The entire process of running the PhytoX involves six steps to achieve the final extract:

(1) Samples are first frozen to capture all the metabolites present in the plant. (2) The sample is then exposed to hydrodynamic force and (3) sonication which break open cell walls and release the extract into the aqueous (water) phase. (4) A cold extraction method is utilized to remove the cannabinoids and terpenes from the emulsion to the solvent phase; using colder temperatures prevents the compounds from breaking down or reacting with each other. (5) This is followed by distillation (50-55º C) and (6) low temperature drying with a high vacuum.

This method of Cannabis extraction can be beneficial in providing a more bioavailable cannabis extract. The technology uses harvesting protocols based on trichome patterns to produce the best concentrates. And between the gentle techniques of the nanoemulsions combined with cold extraction, the full spectrum of cannabinoids and terpenes can be utilized. To date, there has not been a comparative study between this extraction method and others.

Photo: A_Different_Perspective via Pixabay

About the author

Riley Kirk