A wide range of products, including BHO, crumble, wax, shatter, oil, rosin, budder, live resin, ISO Hash and even traditional hash can be classed as concentrate, tinctures, and more, are referred to as cannabis extracts. These products typically include higher levels of cannabinoids, particularly THC, making them far more potent than just buds. The texture of the extract and the mode of intake are generally determined by these various terms.
As we said extracts are more potent, bud potency tends to range between 10-25% THC, while a concentrate typically falls between 50-80% though some exceptional extracts can even push past 90%. Because of this, it takes a lot less to get the job done and if you are inexperienced pulling a whitey (having a funny turn) is very possable. On the other hand because concentrates can be vaped, consumed orally as tinctures and capsules, or eaten in edibles, using them can be considerably more inconspicuous (and odourless) than smoking buds.
For medical marijuana patients RSO (Rick Simpson Oil) which is an alcohol extraction is the better choice for a number of reasons. First off it is generally not as potent as the other extractions, normally around 30-40% THC.
Secondly in the process of purging the alcohol that was used to collect all the cannabinoids, the resulting oil will have been decarboxylated. Decarboxylation is the removal of the carbon dioxide (CO2) molecule that is attached to all the cannabinoids found in the trichomes of the cannabis plant. So if we take just one of the cannabinoids, THC, as an example the cannabinoid starts as THCA, which does not cause you to become high because the carbon stops absorption; THCA must be changed into THC for this to happen which is achieved by heating. A flame of a lighter, the atomizer in a vape pen, a torch with a dab rig, or an oven for making edibles are the most popular ways to accomplish this. But with RSO the purging process uses heat to separate the alcohol from the cannabinoids, thus decarboxylating it and making it ready for consumers to get the most benefits from the cannabinoids.
Thirdly, the oil can be taken in its raw state or diluted into a carrier oil or butter for a precise microgram dosing and a reliable constant for those long term users.
Apart from all this most extracts also have a milder flavour profile compared to buds, this is due to the terpenes, which are found in flowers and are what give them their distinct flavour and smell, are largely taken away by the high heat and pressure needed to generate concentrates. So all essential oils are basically concentrated terpenes, and using the same process that they use to make essential oils that we all burn for fragrance, they can extract the essential oils of the cannabis plants. Then once the desired extract is ready they can add back the flavour use these essential oils and in truth they can add any essential oil as a flavouring, resulting in some extracts being extra flavorful compared to buds. Aside from live resin where the cannabis plants that have just been harvested are cryogenically frozen
before being extracted, creating live resin. Live resin extracts are not devoid of their plant material and consequently keep their original flavours and fragrances, in contrast to most concentrates that are purged of their surplus plant matter and natural terpenes. Live resin turns out to be very tasty because it does not go through the drying process, which might contribute to the breakdown of terpenes during the typical cannabis drying process.
In conclusion both will get you high but extracts take a lot less than bud and for me like everything in life “variety is the spice”. Bud still has its place as does old school Marrocan hash but now we have a plethora of choices with different strengths and tastes to enjoy, so why not enjoy.