The cannabis industry has evolved at a record pace over the last few years. With new innovative products constantly hitting the market it may be hard for even the most seasoned consumers to keep up. While your chosen method of consumption is really just a matter of preference, we hope to serve as your guide while you choose your next adventure into the wild frontier of cannabis.
Which is better? Flower or Concentrates? What even is a concentrate? Let me be your virtual budtender!
What are concentrates?
Shatter, CO2, BHO, rosin, wax, crumble, dabs, tinctures, hash, honey oil etc. All of these and more fall under the umbrella term “Concentrate”.
Concentrates are extracted resin from cannabis plants. Some are extracted from scrap plant material while others are extracted from both the leaves and flowering buds. The different nicknames for these extracts refer to the extraction method and the resulting texture and consistency. The type of concentrate that suits your needs depends on how you wish to use it.
Flower vs Concentrate Potency
Dried flower potency levels come in at around 10-25%. Making it perfect for those that prefer a slow and steady dosage. On the other hand, if you prefer something that packs a punch and has you set for hours with just a couple of inhales, you may want to explore some extracts.
While there are some concentrates that have a higher CBD to THC ratio, concentrates are generally much more potent with levels starting around 50%. Some over achieving concentrates have even clocked in at 90%!
A Matter of Taste
Housed inside the resin glands, or trichomes, of flowers are fragrant compounds called terpenes. These aromatic molecules give the plant its signature scent. With the sheer amount of strains available on the market there are endless flavor profiles and combinations. Citrus, pepper, lavender, pine… seriously, the possibilities are astounding.
Because of the volatile nature of terpenes, the heat used during extraction causes many of these molecules to be lost resulting in a much less fragrant product. This could be a pro for those looking for a more discreet scent.
While traditionally flower provides more flavor, some extraction companies employ methods that preserve the aroma molecules and some even reintroduce them after extraction. Which is good news to those that enjoy the natural scent and taste of cannabis.
Cost and Availability
Gram for gram flower costs less than concentrate. However, there are other things to take into consideration when trying to determine which product will be more cost effective for your personal needs.
We talked about potency before so it goes without saying that with concentrates a little goes a long way. While the initial investment may be steeper this could be more affordable in the long run for a high tolerance consumer or if you prefer a higher dosage.
Flower may be the better option if aren’t an everyday consumer or require lower dosage. This isn’t the end all be all way to determine where to spend your money though. You may want to consider other subjective pricing factors such as brand, purity, regional market and form of consumption/equipment as well.
Convenience vs Ritual
Many concentrates come in perfectly packaged user-friendly cartridges for your chosen device. Although if you choose to forego the cartridge you may find that certain forms of concentrates can be a bit messy to deal with.
Flower needs to be broken down, handled, then packed or rolled. Some may find this time consuming and inconvenient while others thoroughly enjoy the entire process. It’s treated as a ritual of sorts for some.
Which One Will You Choose?
Now that we’ve laid out all the pros and cons you have a choice to make. Really you don’t have to choose at all. Why not both?
Whether you’re a traditionalist that values authenticity and an unprocessed product or your experimental nature leaves you with an affinity for innovation, one thing is for sure. Gotta Love The Plant!