What is Chilled Alcohol Extraction?

What is Chilled Alcohol Extraction?

Chilled alcohol extraction is the process in which some kind of alcohol is cooled to -30 to -40 degrees Celsius (-22 to -40 degrees Fahrenheit) and then used for an extraction process of some desired substance.  Typically, ethanol is the alcohol of choice as it is non-toxic and can be consumed, which is ideal for the extraction of CBD and THC products and certain cooking oils that will be consumed.  Ethanol is used as a solvent in the production of cannabis and hemp derived products due to its ability to dissolve both polar and non-polar molecules effectively.  

How Does the Chilled Alcohol Extraction Process Work? 

The process is similar to other extraction processes, however there are a few key differences.  The solvent is cooled drastically and kept cool during the process.  The substance is soaked in the solvent for a certain amount of time and then filtered off, allowed to evaporate and is the utilized.  

Advantages and Disadvantages of Chilled Alcohol Extraction

Chilled alcohol extraction is advantageous in many ways:  

  • Less labor required 
  • Shorter time 
  • Cost reduction in labor 
  • Efficient 
  • Reduction of filtration necessary 
  • Higher quality product 
  • Greater purity in product 

However, with all extraction types there are disadvantages:  

  • Higher cost of equipment 
  • Need to monitor reaction closely  

This process results in a very pure product, with little to no impurities.  This is ideal for products that require high purity.  However, the equipment needed to cool the alcohol and keep the alcohol cool during the reaction is quite expensive and extensive.   

As with any process, the advantages and disadvantages need to be weighed.  Chilled alcohol extraction is fantastic for products that need to be produced efficiently and with a very high purity.  However, if you do not need this level of purity, another extraction method may be better for you!  

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