When selling a harvest, determining whether to sell it as flowers or concentrates is an important consideration. That’s because the profitability of hemp flower compared to hemp concentrates is quite different. For example, hemp concentrates are exceedingly versatile and thus more lucrative, hence its growing popularity among consumers and distributors alike.
There is much to consider when cultivating hemp for CBD. For example, some hemp strains produce more potent oils and are therefore better suited for cannabinoid extraction.
One must also consider different extraction methods for hemp CBD concentrates. For example, some companies extract CBD oil from hemp using dry sifting and heat in a mechanical process while others use a chemical process that utilizes butane, CO2, and ethanol. It usually takes seven grams of flower to extract one gram of oil concentrate.
Unlike some crops which take months to grow and harvest, hemp is ready for harvesting within six or seven weeks of planting. Afterward, farmers can determine if a plant is more brittle or oily. Brittle flowers are better for mechanical processing while oily flowers are better for concentrates.
Processing Hemp Flower or Concentrates
Another major factor to consider when selecting a crop is the quality of its terpenes. Terpenes are what gives the plant their unique scent and flavor. Oils are often differentiated by their various flavor profiles which largely depend on their terpenes. Some have a distinct citrus taste to them for example. Bear in mind that flavorful concentrate is going to be especially profitable.
Though it may seem counter-intuitive, one of the best ways to enhance the crop’s terpene level is to avoid excessive irrigation because this controlled stressor stimulates terpene production. In addition, an early morning harvest increases terpene production before they’ve had the chance to evaporate in the afternoon heat.
The price of equipment versus outsourced concentrate manufacturers varies. It is costly, though, to a vertically integrated operation that both grows and processes CBD. However, if a farmer plans to grow CBD hemp long-term and is willing to make the initial investment, it may be better to buy the equipment to extract hemp cannabinoids in the long run.
While outsourcing saves the initial costs of the machinery, farmers must split profits with someone else. And because it takes 10 pounds of hemp to get one pound of oil, this needs to be carefully considered. Therefore, instead of splitting profits from the hemp flower or concentrate, some choose to pay a flat fee to have the harvested hemp processed. This is a good option for quality hemp because it is less expensive.
Best Hemp Strains for Concentrates
There are some great options for hemp flower or concentrate cultivation. Super Rich 1 is a great strain that makes large colas of high-quality, cannabinoid-rich hemp. Super Rich 1 (or SR1), is a cross of Suzy Q and Richness. Both of these unique strains are beneficial to the SR1 line. This cross was field-tested across Colorado, Oregon, and Illinois among other places. SR1 produces hemp flowers with an average of 21 percent CBD and is extolled for the large resin content and great oil return.
Cherry Blossom hemp seeds produce large, dense buds with a high concentration of CBD. The plant is resilient when it comes to stress and does well in a variety of environments. Its buds are flavorful with a high resin ideal for commercial growers and extraction specialists.
An important decision to make before planting any seed is whether the hemp will be processed for flower or extracted to make a concentrated cannabinoid oil. While the FDA has prohibited companies from making health claims regarding CBD, many find it effective in treating pain, stress, and more. With the growing popularity of CBD oil, cultivating hemp for CBD oil may be a better farming decision.