Careful CBD Processing Ensures Clean, Potent Product

The purpose of CBD extraction and distillation is simple: to render the cannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD), and others, for consumption. Processing CBD from the hemp plant allows for those seeking its benefits to consume the cannabinoid in manageable doses. The steps to get to a final product are many. But when the producer is knowledgeable, those steps produce clean, consistent, and safe CBD oil. C4 Healthlabs is dedicated to growing, producing and selling the cleanest, purest, and most potent CBD oils in the market. Further, it is our goal to provide transparency at every step of CBD processing. You can learn more about our farming and harvesting practices in Plant and Production Matters. What we discuss below details the specifics of our CBD processing, which includes 54 hours of organic ethanol extraction, distillation, and short-path distillation. 


Organic Ethanol Extraction and Distillation

C4 Healthlabs utilizes a two-step process that combines the use of organic ethanol — because of its effectiveness, efficiency, and safety — and the use of organic MCT coconut oil. This proprietary 36- hour, two-step extraction and distillation process produces a superior CBD product that tastes great and works remarkably well. 


Cryogenic Ethanol Extraction

C4 Healthlabs uses cryogenic ethanol extraction as its first step toward purity. This method ensures the full spectrum of the plants’ cannabinoids and terpenes remain intact at the end of the extraction. This begins with bringing the ethanol down to subzero temperatures at or lower than -20 degrees celsius.

The biomass, hemp milled to the appropriate particle size, is loaded into a large material basket and inserted into the centrifuge. A centrifuge is a laboratory device that forces various components of a fluid to separate based on density. Separation occurs once the vessel rotates extremely fast, using centrifugal force to push the heavier materials to the outside of the vessel.  Then the ethanol is added.

With the material basket filled, the ethanol is added into the extractor. This causes the cannabinoids to separate from the cellular structure of the hemp. Next, the machine uses centrifugal force to separate the ethanol, which now holds the sought after cannabinoids, from the biomass. The ethanol is now collected in a separate container to be distilled.

Thermal Distillation

c4 healthlabs cbd extract


With the first step complete, distillation is then used to increase purity of the cannabinoid profile. Thermal separation works well at this point because the cannabinoids have a different boiling point range than other remaining plant materials. With the use of a rotary evaporator, pressure is reduced via vacuum pump to lower the boiling point of the organic ethanol. Once the boiling point is reached, the distillation flask is rotated at 150 to 200 rpm. This creates a thin film on the upper surface of the round glass container,  enhancing solvent evaporation. Once the ethanol evaporates, it rises and the condenses into a distillate flask. At this point, the resulting extract has a cannabinoid purity range of 85 to 90 percent. In addition to its increased purity, its color is now significantly lighter in color – a clear yellow. 


Final CBD Processing Technique: Short Path Distillation

c4 healthlabs cbd oil short path distillation technique

Once distilled, the extract undergoes an 18-hour short path distillation process to further clarify and purify the solution.

Short path distillation gets its name from the short distance that vapor travels in the system. The process involves a heated flask containing the extracted material (CBD). Heat is gradually increased and a vacuum is applied. This draws the vapors from the flask to another, separating and purifying the sample in the process. The vapors of the  cannabinoids and particulates condense at different temperatures, allowing for precise collection of specific materials such as cannabidiol. 

This final process results in a thick CBD oil nearing the consistency of honey. It is over 99% pure and potent. We take that oil and blend it with organic MCT coconut oil to create our full spectrum CBD oils. We chose this delivery medium because of its shelf life and ability to enhance the absorption of CBD.