Materials & Use

What is Hemp CBD Oil made from? Answers to Four Important Questions

Gabi Antunes

Sep 4, 2019

Have you heard someone talk about hemp CBD oil lately? Has an article or video crept up on your social media feed? You’re not alone: this popular compound seems to be everywhere and seems to have sprung up overnight. Suddenly, this product has made its way into every product imaginable, from gummy bears to spa treatments, in states that permit these products.

If you’re feeling like you’re behind on this trendy new ingredient, our guide answers four important questions about hemp CBD oil that will get you up to speed. Read on to learn what hemp CBD oil is, where the substance comes from, the ingredients this product contains, and which items are available blended and infused with this cannabinoid, in states that allow these products.

What is Hemp CBD Oil?

Hemp CBD oil is an edible substance containing concentrated amounts of the cannabinoid Cannabidiol (CBD). Typically sold in a 1-ounce bottle, hemp CBD is sold in small quantities in varying concentrations, ranging from a few hundred milligrams per bottle to 3,000 milligrams or more per bottle. These bottles are frequently accompanied by dropper tops for easy measuring.

Hemp CBD has exploded in popularity in recent years, making its way into American lives wherever these products can legally be sold to adults. Unlike its cousin, the intoxicating Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD does not cause any intoxicating effect.

This compound is abundant in industrial hemp plants, a variant of the cannabis sativa L. plant bred to contain trace amounts to no THC. These plants must contain 0.3% or less THC to qualify as industrial hemp. Extracts from industrial hemp are de-scheduled, meaning that they are no longer considered “marijuana extracts” according to the U.S. Controlled Substances Act (CSA). This distinction, encoded in the 2018 Farm Bill, has opened the floodgates to hemp CBD oil and related products throughout the U.S. but only in states that permit a variety of hemp products.

What is Hemp CBD oil Made From?

Hemp CBD oil is the product of industrial hemp crops. First, industrial hemp is processed and the hemp CBD extracted through one of a few methods, including extraction with an ethanol-based solvent or a CO2-based solvent. The resulting product is referred to as “full spectrum,” as it contains all the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids from the industrial hemp plant unaltered. This extract includes tiny trace amounts of THC within the legal limits set out for industrial hemp extracts.

From there, hemp CBD oil makers can send the full-spectrum material through additional processes to create a “broad spectrum” or an “isolate” product. A broad spectrum product retains all the terpenes and flavonoids of the plant, but scrubs even the slightest trace of THC from the extract. Hemp CBD isolate removes all compounds from the extract except for Cannabidiol. The result is a fine, crystal-like powder that Is 99.9% pure hemp CBD.

While there are budding hemp CBD oil businesses around the world, many consumers look for products made domestically in the United States. Although there are many states with industrial hemp programs, and growing this crop is allowed by law, states such as Colorado and Kentucky are known for their industrial hemp cultivation programs.

How Can Hemp CBD Oil Be Consumed?

Although hemp CBD oil comes as a tincture, consumers aren’t limited to using them sublingually. Many ways to ingest or use hemp CBD oil are available, and consumers have many product types to choose from. Select whichever product fits your preferences and unique situation. Here are some of the main and emerging product types you may find in stores or online, in states that have implemented regulatory programs and permit these product types:

  • Sublingually. Hemp CBD oil is can be administered “sublingually.” This straightforward method of hemp CBD oil consumption is one of the most common ways to ingest the cannabinoid.
  • Mixed into a liquid. Drinking hemp CBD may seem like a natural way to consume this product. However, keep in mind that hemp CBD oil is indeed an oil, and it will likely rise to the top of coffee or juice without vigorous or frequent stirring. Water-soluble hemp CBD oil formulations, which can be seamlessly stirred into liquids, are becoming more popular. Alternatively, stir in hemp CBD-infused honey, sugar, or other sweetener into a drink.
  • Incorporated into food. Hemp CBD oil can be dropped directly into a food to be eaten straight or cooked. Some consumers like to stir hemp CBD oil into applesauce, pudding, or other spoon-able food. Others may bake it into a brownie or cookie, careful to cook it at a lower temperature to not degrade the quality of the CBD. Hemp CBD gummies are one of the most popular food items on the market today.
  • Used as a topical in lotion or skincare. Body butters, cooling creams, face masks, serums, and lotions are just some of the many products consumers can choose from.
  • Swallowed in capsule form. Some consumers want to skip over the mess and possible inaccuracy of measuring CBD out of a dropper and go for capsules.
  • Vaped. Specially-formulated hemp CBD oil extract is available for inhalation via a vape pen. Pre-filled hemp CBD oil cartridges are plentiful, with many terpene profiles and flavors to choose from but only in states that allow for inhalation of hemp CBD.
  • Worn as a patch. A transdermal patch can continually release hemp CBD over a lengthy period of time.

This list covers many major categories of hemp CBD products, but new innovations are being released all the time. No matter which product you believe is best for your lifestyle, be sure to examine the product, packaging, and website information, including third-party lab test results, before making any purchase.

Answering the Most Important Questions About Hemp CBD Oil

It’s important to get the basics down about hemp CBD oil before diving into the immense world of products. New items are coming out all the time in states that have implemented regulatory programs, and as this cannabinoid grows in popularity, with the right information in hand, you can safely and smartly navigate this ever-expanding landscape. Now that you know what hemp CBD oil is, what it’s made of, and which products are available, go out and explore the vast world of hemp CBD for yourself!