Let’s begin by first understanding hemp laws and why they are critical for anything around hemp-based products. The 2018 Farm Bill clarified a simple a question long lost in the stigma. Hemp and cannabis (marijuana) were finally separated from being considered the same plant listed as a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance. But what does this mean?
The US Government acknowledges that Cannabis and Hemp are truly different. While the plants are similar in genetic makeup, they are sister plants not twins. Cannabis contains a higher percentage of the psychoactive cannabinoid called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and contains low amounts of cannabidiol (CBD), other cannabinoids and terpenes. On the other hand, hemp contains higher percentages of CBD versus THC. Per the Farm Bill, up to 0.3% THC is legally allowed with hemp derived products.
However, not all hemp derived CBD products will contain THC. We will discuss further down the benefits of utilizing products with THC versus non-THC products. Let’s start with the illustration below.
From the illustration, we first need to clarify information regarding hemp seed oil and CBD. They are not the same thing. A hemp seed, is just that, a seed. The hemp seed is pressed to exact hemp seed oil. However, the hemp plant cannabinoids such as CBD is not present until the plant is grown and harvested.
Many hemp derived CBD products on the market confuse consumers by stating hemp seed oil is the same thing and you get benefits of CBD. This is simply not true.
Once the hemp plant is harvested, each strain (also known as cultivar) produces its own specific genetic cannabinoid structure. This means in additional to CBD, you may get other cannabinoids like CBN, CBG, etc… Plus, grown naturally, the plant will also produce its own terpenes which are commonly used within essential oils.
Industrial hemp is grown differently to harvest the fibers out of the stalk. The fibers are utilized may ways to create hempcrete, wood, paper, clothing, plastics and more. This type of hemp is not used for manufactured for consumption.
A Source of Vitamins – Hemp seeds also contain natural vitamin sources for vitamin E and minerals, such as phosphorus, potassium, sodium, magnesium, sulfur, calcium, iron and zinc.
A Source of Protein – Hemp seeds are a great source of high protein levels and contain significant amounts of the amino acids, methionine and cysteine, as well as very high levels of arginine and glutamic acid.
A Source of Fiber – Whole hemp seeds are a good source of both soluble (20%) and insoluble fiber (80%). Soluble fiber forms a gel-like substance in your gut being valuable source of nutrients for digestive bacteria and may also reduce spikes in blood sugar and regulate cholesterol levels.
Hemp can be grown with different levels of CBD percentages to serve a specific use(s). Popular uses are to produce oils, smokeable flower, trim, teas, concentrates, gummies, seasoning, and more. But what type of distinction is being used for the product itself?
Hemp derived CBD must have a distinction between Full Spectrum, Broad Spectrum or Isolate. How are the distinctions defined and why?
Full Spectrum – Full Spectrum contains the full hemp plant without anything being removed which includes the Federally legal 0.3% THC amount. These types of products have multiple cannabinoids and terpenes that maximum the benefit of the product. Typically,
Broad Spectrum – Broad Spectrum is basically full spectrum minus the THC contents. You can still get other cannabinoids and terpenes, but all THC has specifically been removed from the product.
Isolate – Isolate is pure 99.9% CBD concentrate. The CBD has been isolated away from other cannabinoid structures and terpenes.
Disclaimer: Prolonged use of Full Spectrum products may show positive on a drug test. Some individuals choose the other CBD product types to prevent a potential for a failed drug test.