CRC Processing, what is it and Should we be Smoking it?

by Brittney Graham

I don’t know about you all, but I have been seeing a lot of white lately when it comes to concentrates. I am talking new snow in Alaska white. Looking at the dispensary shelf has me seeing a rainbow of colors from golden honey to pure white snow with the price points going up towards the end of that rainbow. We have all been told at one point or another in this community that the lighter the color of the concentrate the better the medicine which makes us want to drool when we see what looks like purity in a jar.

But I have to be honest, when I saw that white crumble staring back at me from the other side of the glass, I couldn’t help but think that it looked like comet cleaner.  My mind also started to wander to the things we buy that are white that are actually not healthy for us at all such as; white bread, white pasta, white rice, white sugar, and even salt. So, I dug in my heels and started my research on the process it took to make these concentrates so pearly colorless and Color Remediation Column Butane Hash Oil (CRC BHO) Processing is what I found.

Usually, extractors Running Cannabis material use a closed loop or short path extraction system that use pure butane/butane blends or alcohol as the solvent and nothing else. I have spoke about this in detail on the Divine Independence section on the Herbage website if you would like to brush up on the process. Using this method, the color of hash is often dictated by the color of the trichomes you are extracting. For example, when harvesting a heavy Indica strain, the grower wants to see a high percentage of amber trichomes before cutting the plant. When harvested, that plant will produce an amber rich hash due to those trichomes. If the plant is left too long however, impurities can develop such as plant lipids and fats creating a dark gold or even brown product. So, it is safe to say that when speaking of the usual extraction process it is easier to tell if old flower or lower quality plant material was used such as trim.

Now, let’s overview the new CRC method and how It is done compared to the current methods. Using the new method, extractors use a different combination of three things to essentially “fix” the color of otherwise dark hashis:

  • T5 Clay
  • Frying Oil Saver (filter powder)
  • Silica gel 200-400 mesh

Once compacted tightly together in a filtration column the BOH material is run through the column for its final filtration where its able to further extract impurities (and pretty much everything else) out of each run of the material. Basically, BHO is filtered so much in the process that the product color is changed from dark brown/black to a clear, yellowish stabilized oil that can be dabbed or smoked.

So, the real question is, it is safe? “Experts” in the field, which I say lightly since this is a new field, state that is the process is done “properly” there are no cross contaminants that get into the final product. However, if it isn’t done the right way, it has been reported that microscopic silica and other particles could be dangerous and mess up your lungs. Upon smoking CRC processed products, I can tell you it burns both the nose and chest yet has the most delicious smell? Seems odd to me since most of the terpenes are lost during all the run cycles. I also leave you with one more question, if this process removes so much of the cannabis plant, we find beneficial for healing, why are patients being charged more for this product than products that never had solvents in it to begin with?

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