Methods and Effectiveness of Ethanol Extraction


In between cultivating cannabis and putting concentrate products on the shelf, there’s a bit of chemistry. Products that rely on concentrates – such as tinctures, sublinguals, and even edibles – need to have the active components of cannabis extracted from the leaf itself. We obviously aren’t baking cannabis leaves into brownies, so we have to find a way to take the cannabinoids out of the plant without the additional phytochemicals or potential toxins.

Thus, a little chemistry: manufacturers suspend their cannabis in a solution that can strip the plants of the oils without taking any chemicals that are harmful or sour the flavor of the products. Traditionally, cannabis plants have been suspended in either a solution of butane or a solution of supercritical CO2. Both of these options have their respective pros and cons:

Butane yields a relatively pure product but can be unstable and combust easily.

Supercritical CO2 is a lot more stable, but can sometimes yield harmful chemicals if it isn’t properly washed.

New Methods of Extracting

Within the last decade, cannabis growers have tried new methods of extracting the active ingredients out of the plant. One of these methods is to use ethanol as a means of extraction. The process works the same way as other methods: the plant material is placed in a solvent – in this case, ethanol – which will dissolve the active components of the plant into a concentrate.

Ethanol does this as well as other extraction methods, removing the cannabinoids and terpenes found in cannabis and dissolving them into a solution. Different solvents will draw different chemicals with them, so there’s usually a purifying process afterward. Ethanol, in this case, also dissolves the water-soluble components of the plant because it is a polar molecule. Water-soluble components include phytochemicals like chlorophyll, so additional purification needs to happen, otherwise you end up with a solution that’s less potent and tastes grassy.

Thus, ethanol extraction is not without its drawbacks. Ethanol extraction is much safer than butane and certainly more effective than supercritical CO2, and ethanol is also safe to consume according to the FDA. However, the process of purifying ethanol solutions can be quite costly, and even then, ethanol extracts don’t always meet the same quality as cannabinoids extracted safely through butane, unless done with well-funded equipment.

Nonetheless, ethanol extraction brings an exciting new option to the manufacturing of cannabis products, and with new research and developments coming out every day, the process is becoming much more effective at purifying cannabinoid solutions. Even though we’re experts at making cannabis products, producers at Waveseer far prefer using ethanol as a solvent, since accidents can happen with butane. With our combined expertise and advanced purification methods, Waveseer makes products that are potent, safe, and satisfactory to all who use them.

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We’ve got cannabis down to a science

Importance of Terpenes in Medicinal Cannabis Products


THC and CBD are the main components of cannabis, but they aren’t the only ingredients worth considering. Cannabis gets its flavor and smell from chemicals called terpenes – naturally formed hydrocarbons that plants produce to ward off harmful bacteria and fungi. Cannabis  has naturally high levels of terpenes. 

All plants produce terpenes, which is how different plants evolve to have different flavors – the terpene composition of an apple is vastly different to that of garlic, for example.

140 Terpenes!

Cannabis has about 140 different terpenes, and different strains and growing methods produce a different cocktail of them. The composition of terpenes is what gives cannabis its distinct smell, and is also how different strains can be told apart. When terpenes are controlled for through specific growing methods, cannabis strains, and soil nutrition, the products made from that plant will also have a different flavor, which is how producers like Waveseer are able to make high-quality products that are pleasant to all senses.

However, terpenes are important for more than just their flavor. While THC is commonly regarded as the only psychoactive substance in cannabis, research suggests that terpenes also have an effect on the brain. Myrcene, for example, has a musty and herbal smell and is also reported to have analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. By contrast, linalool, a terpene with a chiefly lavender scent, might have properties that can boost immune function and restore cognitive function.

Of course, terpenes alone can’t cure diseases or be seen as a panacea. However, research into the medicinal properties of terpenes is exciting, as new studies suggest that terpenes can play a role in the treatment of both bodily and cognitive diseases, which is why certain terpenes and aromas are used in tandem with products that have specific medicinal purposes. At Waveseer, we understand the importance of terpenes in the plants and products we cultivate, and we stay up-to-date on all the new research involving these chemicals. The proof is in our products, so find a distributor that carries Waveseer today!

Deep water culture products.

We’ve got cannabis down to a science

How LED Grow Lights Help Cannabis


As with any plant, a variety of conditions must be met to grow the best strains of cannabis. Soil and water are obvious examples, but one condition that’s often overlooked is the lighting. The source, color, and intensity of the light used to cultivate cannabis has a huge effect on the outcome of the plant, whether the growers rely on traditional sunlight or alternative light sources.

One increasingly popular light source is LED lights. LEDs used to be expensive energy suckers with little light coverage, but nowadays, they’re highly regarded as viable light sources for most agricultural products. So how, exactly, are LED grow lights used? And why do they work so well? First, let’s touch on how LEDs actually work.

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LEDs, or light-emitting diodes, produce light by energizing electrons. In simple terms:

Electrons are excited in a negatively charged area of a semiconductor. Those electrons then move to the positive area of that semiconductor, where they release their excess energy as light. 

Unlike other light sources such as incandescent light bulbs, LEDs produce a lot less heat, and they last much longer since they don’t rely on filaments. The result is a light source that’s energy-efficient and durable.

Recent advances in LED technology allow users to have more control over the color and intensity of the lighting. This is observed in all technology that uses LEDs, from television sets to your smartphone, but it’s especially useful for farmers.

Different Wavelengths

Different plants thrive in different wavelengths of light. Cannabis, for example, tends to thrive in bluer light during its vegetative stage, as blue light is more conducive to leaf growth, but in the flowering stage, red and yellow light encourages budding. The result is plants that are bigger, healthier, and more viable.

 Additionally, manipulating the light can yield different effects on the plant’s flavor or the experience of using the plant itself. We use LEDs at Waveseer too, and the proof is in our wide range of medicinal products available to distributors. With our combined expertise in cannabis cultivation, we know how to get the light just right for the products we put out.

We’ve got cannabis down to a science