ˈlīv ˈre-zᵊn | Noun
It’s the freshest cannabis concentrate on the market. Considered the future of cannabis, live resin is the process of making hemp extracts by extracting the active ingredients from the plant the moment it’s harvested. This concentrate offers the highest purity and most potent effects because the plant’s phytochemical makeup is at its peak right after harvest. When made from the marijuana bud, live resin concentrates contain high levels of THC. When made from hemp, they contain a high percentage of cannabidiol (CBD).
“Did you know that Live Resin is considered the future of cannabis concentrates?”
“If you are looking for a hemp extract that provides an ultra-tasty experience, consider Live Resin — it has all of the terpenes.“
What is Live Resin?
It’s a cannabis concentrate extracted from the living cannabis plants. This concentrate is so valuable because it comes from practically untouched, freshly harvested plants. The plants haven’t been cut, dried, cured, or processed in any way. Imagine squeezing a fresh orange juice loaded in vitamins directly from the tree — without the fruits suffering any damage during storage. It’s the same with live resin extraction. Now, oranges hold a few days until their nutrient levels begin to drop. With cannabis, it’s a different story.
Cannabis plants survive only a few hours after harvest before getting dried. That’s why manufacturers flash freeze the hemp plant material and then extract it. An extract from the living cannabis plant is known as live resin and has a high concentration of terpenes.
Live resin is made from the fresh flower buds and sugar leaves. Processors don’t include the large fan leaves and stems. Because the plant is not dried or cured, the essential oils, aka terpenes, are also there, giving a distinctive aroma and flavor to the final product.
Terpenes preserve the plant’s powerful aroma and offer an abundance of health benefits. Traditional extracts don’t have the same terpene profile as live resin, so the smell of the final product is different than the original plant. In fact, extractions on dried cannabis plants lose up to 95% of their terpene profile before even getting the plant through the extraction process.
With live resin extraction, concentrates maintain the highest terpene content, giving the extracts the original cannabis aroma. This makes live resin concentrates a flavorful dabbing experience.
Live Resin Extracts from Hemp
Live resin extracts first appeared out of the recreational marijuana space from high-THC strains. Today, the hemp industry is also focused on these concentrates. You can find some top-quality live resin extracts made from high-CBD hemp strains on the market.
The entire point of live resin is to keep the essential oils, or terpenes, intact. Terpenes like myrcene and terpinolene are the most common in the hemp plant. But, they are also lightweight and volatile, so it’s significantly harder to keep them around. The drying and curing processes use high temperatures, which destroys the terpenes.
When the plant is flash-frozen immediately after harvest, the terpenes preserve more fully. While cannabinoids play a significant role in the hemp plant, terpenes can play a more significant role in dictating the effects of a strain. The cold extraction process yields a product that tastes stronger and better while offering a more complex therapeutic effect.
The hemp plant produces the same terpenes present in the marijuana flower. Consumers and manufacturers are getting more aware of the importance of terpenes in their extracts. We’re noticing development in the area of producing hemp live resin.
Where Did Live Resin Originate?
Live resin is a relatively new concentrate. It first appeared somewhere between 2011 and 2013 by a small group of growers and extractors in Colorado. The main role in developing the technique have William Fenger and “Giddy Up,” founder of EmoTek Labs. They developed a specialized BHO extractor that maintains incredibly low temperatures to produce live resin.
Why Choose Live Resin Extracts Over Smoking Bud
If you don’t at least once try a live resin concentrate, you are missing out. These extracts provide a clean, intense experience that traditional smoking can’t deliver. Concentrates contain the most desirable ingredients, giving you a stronger effect in a shorter time compared to smoking buds.
Another positive is that you’ll notice a decrease in unwanted side effects. The distilling process used to create concentrates removes undesirable components like fats and waxes. The end product is clean and refined, offering distinct flavors and aromas. Most importantly, it provides a smooth inhale when vaping.
What Does It Look and Feel Like?
Live resin concentrates look similar to other cannabis concentrates. The main difference is the aroma and chemical profile. These concentrates often have a stark golden color that comes from the pigments from the fresh plant resin before it oxidizes. They tend to have a waxy, sometimes slippery consistency.
Live resin extracts come in the form of wax, shatter, budder, badder, sauce, dabs, vape pens and cartridges. Over time, they can evolve, getting a cloudy, more glandular texture. This happens because terpenes start to evaporate, and the stability of the resin breaks down. That said, live resin extracts are best when consumed fresh. As high-grade fresh extracts, they have a shorter shelf life.
The chemical and psychical characteristics of the extract depend on the type of strain used. The consistency is more fluid than other concentrates because of the additional essential oils present.
How to Store It?
Keep it away from heat, moisture, light, and open air. Best option is an airtight and lightproof silicone container to help maintain its texture and consistency. A container also protects the cannabinoids from degradation and prevents the terpenes from evaporation. You can store it in the refrigerator or in a cold room, and be sure to close it securely after each use. Exposing the concentrate to environmental factors can result in loss of potency, change of color, texture, and taste.
What Makes Live Resin Different from Other Cannabis Concentrates?
Its high terpene content. This concentrate delivers a more complex terpene profile compared to shatter, rosin, or other products. People who use cannabis concentrates value the flavor, aroma, and their potent effects.
Differences Between Live Resin and Sauce
Live resin is always made from fresh “flash-freezed” cannabis plants, without exception. Sauce, on the other hand, includes some fresh plant material, but extractors may use cured buds to create trim run or nug run sauce. The cured plant material included in sauce lacks the large number of terpenes found in resin.
Is Live Resin a “Full Spectrum” Extract?
Right now, live resin concentrate is the closest thing to full spectrum extract. However, not all full spectrum concentrates use fresh frozen cannabis as the starting plant material. For example, kief is a full spectrum concentrate, but it uses cured cannabis as material. The goal of full spectrum cannabis extracts is to capture as much of the full cannabinoid and terpene profile of the fresh plant as possible. It aims to acquire the active molecules within the trichome gland without any alteration.
Benefits of Live Resin Extracts
- Higher terpene profile
As we already mentioned, live resin extracts are especially rich in terpenes. The reason for this is that terpenes quickly evaporate after harvesting, drying, or processing the plant. Once the plant goes through all of that, it contains only a fraction of the original terpene profile. It all comes down to maintaining cooler temperatures during extraction.
- Higher concentrations of CBD and THC
Live resin also may come with a higher cannabinoid profile. Like terpenes, cannabinoids start to break down after harvest. They are also sensitive to heat. The breakdown of cannabinoids in the hemp plant is very important for growers who want to create a final product that contains certain cannabinoids.
- Live resin is extracted from top-shelf hemp flower
This concentrate has the same flavor profile as the fresh plant, which makes it easier to identify extracts made from low-quality hemp plants. If the concentrate is made from low-quality hemp, you will know by its smell. For example, it’s very hard to tell if a CBD isolate product is made from poor quality hemp flower. Sometimes, manufacturers add terpenes to their isolate products for flavor. The issue with this is that the terpenes may be synthetic or derived from another plant.
How is Live Resin Made?
Unlike kief and other concentrates, live resin cannot be made at home. It requires knowledge and equipment to get it right. Its extraction begins immediately after the plant is cut from the soil. Extractors skip the drying and curing process to make this extract. Why? Because processed plant material decreases in terpene content by 60% before reaching the consumer.
To stop the loss of terps, processors freeze the plant quickly. But it’s not that easy. The resin glands that produce terpenes and other cannabinoids become very brittle. So, they handle the plant with extreme care to not damage the delicate heads. The freshly frozen hemp plants contain a much higher water content than decarboxylated plant matter. This means that the extraction has to be done at very cold temperatures, well below zero.
Terpenes give each hemp strain its unique taste and smell, from piney to citrusy or skunky. Fresh hemp plants contain the highest levels of terpenes. Within seven to 10 days after harvest and during the drying and curing process, most terpenes evaporate. Lack of terpenes changes the overall flavor profile of the hemp flower.
Made from fresh hemp plants at their peak levels of sesquiterpenes and monoterpenes, this concentrate provides a more floral and fruity flavor than any other. Monoterpenes like myrcene, limonene, and linalool — also present in herbs like hops, lavender, and eucalypts — give hemp its floral, fruity and aerial flavor. Sesquiterpenes like humulene and caryophyllene give hemp its spicy flavor and are also found in basil, black pepper, and cinnamon.
Terpenes are not there to just provide enhanced flavor and aroma. They boost and amplify the medicinal benefits of cannabis. A 2011 study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology revealed all about the entourage effect of terpenes and cannabinoids.
How to use live resin?
One of the most popular ways to use any concentrate is to dab (vaping). Because of the high terpene profile, dabbing live resin is even more enjoyable. For this very reason, people invest in high-quality custom dab rigs with an electric nail. But, you will experience the same results with any type of dab rig you use.
A simpler type of dabbing tool, a nectar collector offers similar results to high-end dab rigs. Nectar collectors look like screwdrivers with only the metal tip exposed. To use it, heat the top with a butane torch or a similar heat source, apply the heated tip to the extract and inhale.
Sprinkle it on Flower
If you don’t have a dab rig or a nectar collector, scoop out some concentrate (little goes a long way) and top off a bowl of our hemp flower. Adding this extract on top of your CBD flower is a great way to increase its potency, especially if you use it for medicinal purposes. You can also place it outside your pre-roll paper and smoke it with your pre-rolls.
Live Resin Carts
Live resin carts are a popular and increasingly common way to consume this concentrate. They are oil cartridges filled with live resin and are very easy to use.
Cost of Live Resin
This extract is more expensive than others. The price depends on the quality of starter material, extraction processes, etc. It can cost anywhere from $10 to $50 more per gram than a gram of other concentrates. High-end resin can go as much as $100 per gram, while slightly lower grade stays within the range of $60 to $80 per gram. As you know, you are paying for all of the juicy terps and the ultra-tasty experience they provide.
More people are becoming aware of the advantages live resin offers in terms of flavor and quality. It’s clear that this form of extract has a very special place in the market. This concentrate offers ultra-high terpene content and an ideal cannabinoid profile. Often compared to full spectrum extract, live resin products are considered the best option in this space at the moment.