In our years working with CBD, a common question we hear is: is CBD oil made from Indica or Sativa?
For those of you who don’t know, Indica and Sativa are both varieties of cannabis plant with different properties.
In this article we’ll explain what strain CBD oil is typically made of and why.
Is CBD oil made from Indica or Sativa?
CBD oil is typically made from sativa, or cannabis sativa L.
This is because CBD oil is almost always made from hemp plants, which is in the cannabis sativa family. Hemp plants are not of the Indica variety of cannabis, and so CBD oil is usually not made from Indica plants, although it is still technically possible to do so.
Below we explain why CBD oil is typically made from cannabis sativa and some key differences between Indica and Sativa plants in general.
But first, here is a brief explanation of what CBD oil is and how it is made.
Related: What is CBD Oil? CBD Oil Explained.
What is CBD oil?
CBD oil is a food supplement made from hemp plants.
The active ingredient in CBD oil is CBD, a cannabinoid. Cannabinoids are also often called phytocannabinoids and classical cannabinoids. There are currently 113 known cannabinoids including CBD, THC, CBN and CBG.
Scientists first began identifying and researching cannabinoids in the 1940s and continue to do so today.
CBD oil is made by harvesting hemp plants which then undergo supercritical CO2 extraction. This process creates a CBD-rich plant extract that comes in the form of a thick dark green-brownish paste. This paste can be used to make CBD oils, skin products and edibles.
Because CBD oil is not psychoactive, it is not a controlled substance in most parts of the world. Unlike cannabis oil, that is high in THC, (the psychoactive cannabinoid), CBD oil does not make you high.
CBD oil is widely available throughout the UK and the industry continues to grow as more and more people are choosing to incorporate CBD oil into their wellbeing regimen.
What are Indica and Sativa?
Now you know a little more about the nature of CBD oil, let’s explore the difference between Indica and Sativa varieties of cannabis plants.
Indica and Sativa are different varieties of cannabis plant. They each have different properties and favour different climates.
In order to understand why CBD oil is made from cannabis Sativa and not Indica, we must first understand the differences between the two varieties.
Below is an outline of the differences between Indica and sativa varieties and the properties of each.
The differences between Indica and Sativa
The distinction between Indica and Sativa varieties of cannabis are due to natural changes caused by climate and adaptation of the plants.
Indica varieties originate from central Asia, North India, Nepal, Tibet, Afghanistan and Pakistan. Sativa varieties originate from equatorial places such as Thailand, Mexico, South India and Jamaica.
The strains have different psychoactive properties and physical characteristics because of the climates that they originate from.
Indica is generally considered to give a ‘stronger high’ than Sativa varieties.
Hemp is a form of cannabis sativa, and so can also be referred to as cannabis sativa. Indica is not associated with hemp, however.
Below is some clarification on how hemp and cannabis sativa are technically the same variety, and the key difference that sets them apart.
What is the difference between hemp and cannabis plants?
These days there is still a lot of confusion about the difference between hemp and cannabis plants.
Cannabis sativa refers to both hemp and cannabis plants, since hemp plants are just a strain of cannabis sativa. It is because of this that hemp is often referred to as cannabis or cannabis sativa.
The distinction between hemp and cannabis was made for legal purposes. While hemp and cannabis sativa are essentially the same plant, hemp plants have adapted and been bred over time to contain very little THC. THC is the cannabinoid that makes cannabis psychoactive, and it is also what makes cannabis plants illegal. Therefore, low-THC varieties of cannabis are classified as hemp and are not illegal in most parts of the world.
The amount of THC in a cannabis sativa plant is what creates the distinction between hemp and cannabis. In order for a cannabis sativa plant to be classified as hemp and not cannabis, it must contain under 0.2% THC. (This value is for the UK. The figure varies slightly across the world, with it being 0.3% in the US and 1% in Switzerland).
If a cannabis sativa plant contains over the legal limit of 0.2% THC, then it is automatically classified as cannabis and is therefore a controlled substance in the UK.
Other differences between hemp and cannabis plants
In order to maximise levels of THC to create a stronger effect, cannabis growers have over time bred, (and even genetically modified), cannabis plants to contain higher levels of THC than nature ever intended.
On the other side of the spectrum, hemp plants have also been bred to contain lower levels of THC.
This breeding results in physical differences between the plants that a trained eye can spot immediately.
Hemp plants tend to produce fewer buds and resin, (a sticky substance produced by the plant during the flowering phase), since this is the primary source of THC in the plant. THC can still be found throughout hemp plants, in the buds, stems, leaves, roots and even the seeds, but only very little.
Hemp plants also tend to be taller and thinner, growing upward rather than outward. Cannabis plants on the other hand grow outward and so are generally not as tall and do not grow as fast as hemp.
Because hemp plants grow so fast – up to 20 feet in just four months! – hemp fibre is a highly versatile and sustainable crop that can be used to make biofuel to run diesel engines and 100% biodegradable plastic.
Why is CBD oil made from Sativa and not Indica?
So, CBD oil is generally made from sativa because CBD oil is almost always made from hemp. Hemp is the perfect plant to make CBD oil because it is naturally low in THC and rich in CBD. And hemp is a strain of cannabis sativa, not Indica.
In theory, it is possible to make CBD oil out of Indica plants, but the quality of the oil would be compromised.
This is because the Indica would contain THC way over the legal limit and would have to be reduced somehow. The extract could be diluted to reduce the THC, but that would also dilute the CBD and other cannabinoids.
Or the extract could undergo further processing to make CBD isolate, which removes all organic matter from the extract besides the CBD. This would also remove all the phytochemicals found in the plant such as terpenes, fatty acids, flavonoids, plant fibre, chlorophyll and essential vitamins and minerals, which is not desirable.
Where to buy high-grade, organic, full spectrum CBD oil
At Aura CBD Oil UK we provide thousands of people across the globe with 100% natural, organic, full spectrum CBD oils, pastes, balms and edibles.
If you have any questions about what you read in this article or about CBD oil in general, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or send us a message on Facebook – we love to hear from you and answer your important questions.
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