Botanical Extraction

Evaluating In-Process Monitoring Procedures for Cannabis Compounds

Written by Robert Hammell

In-process monitoring is the act of maintaining quality of production throughout all stages of manufacturing. As  cannabis production becomes standardized, higher quality may become standardized.

Uniformity is something that all brands should strive for. A low level of variability leads to customer retention with lowered costs as raw materials can be maximized throughout all stages of production. As the cannabis market grows in both the recreational and medical sectors, there are multiple ways manufacturers can employ in-process monitoring. This is the only way to ensure this high standard of consistency.


Climate Conditions During Growing

High caliber ingredients lead to high caliber products. While cannabis or hemp is grown, there are multiple variables that need to regulate the final product. Soil and water pH, temperature, humidity, light exposure plus carbon dioxide versus oxygen levels all can influence the final product. Green houses compared to outdoor growing setups allow for more control over each of these elements.

Aside from growth, there are also factors that play a role like trimming, drying and storage that could affect the final product. By incorporating various measuring capabilities and standardization techniques, variability in organic material can be minimized. For some cannabis producers, this is the end of the manufacturing stage, and it is ready to go, for others, this is only the beginning.


Synthesizing Standards in Advanced Production

For cannabis producers who need to put their product through higher levels of processing, the variables continue to grow. Lab conditions and the equipment required play the largest roles in consistency during these stages of production. Two of the biggest factors to consider at this stage are temperature and time. The ability to monitor the temperature change when combined with how much exposure the organic material receives from that temperature means lab technicians can more easily track chemical changes during decarboxylation from CBDA to CBD or THCA to THC.

This also minimizes any excess compounds being overexposed to temperature and subsequently being burned off through various lab procedures. Additionally, monitoring chemical composition may allow for less temperature exposure, as the desired effects may be achieved with lower exposure. Various products allow for this near-infrared spectroscopy and up to the second data collection to be monitored through all stages of lab synthesis.

About the author

Robert Hammell