Here at Silver Owl, we’ve spent the past year mixing all kinds of terpenes into our products and in doing so have managed to produce some of the industry’s most delicious flavors across the board. We’ve fielded enough questions about these that we felt now would be a good time to explain terpenes to our community.
We must warn you: though this article will attempt to simplify the subject, it’s a very complex one. And while we can share the most common uses of individual terpenes as reported by end users and scientific studies, we cannot make any usage recommendations or express any claims such as, “Hey! Pinene cures cancer!” We simply do not yet have enough conclusive evidence to support such claims; making them anyways would be unethical, illegal, and have the FDA on us like cheese on macaroni. So take this all with a grain of salt.
With that said, let’s dive into this subject!
What Are Terpenes?
Terpenes, or ‘terps’ for short, are the unsaturated hydrocarbons found in many plants that are responsible for their aromas and many of their flavors. While these can be found in flora across the world, hemp and cannabis are well-known sources for these compounds, producing them in much higher concentrations than those found in other plants.
Generally speaking, products like ours include terpenes sourced in three ways:
Cannabis derived terpenes: these terps are extracted from medicinal or recreational cannabis plants, but are not legally available for use in areas that prohibit cannabis use. As such, you’ll only hear of cannabis derived terpenes being used in legal, usually psychoactive cannabis products found in states that have legalized the plant’s cultivation, use and sale.
Hemp derived terpenes: these terps are no different than their cannabis derived counterparts, but are extracted from federally legal industrial hemp plants that contain less than 0.3% Delta 9 THC, either as a byproduct during the extraction of specific cannabinoids or specifically for their value (but this process can be much more expensive and isn’t employed by most brands).
Botanically derived terpenes: as their name suggests, botanically derived terps (sometimes referred to as ‘botanical terps’ or ‘floral terps’) are extracted from other types of plants that contain these compounds. These terps are generally much cheaper to use in products, as the price of the raw materials they’re extracted from are currently lower than the prices of bulk industrial hemp. However, cannabis and hemp plants will likely always trump other sources of terpenes due to their dramatically higher concentrations of these wonderful hydrocarbons.
Even though there are three means of producing terpenes for our products, the Silver Owl CBD Company has been strictly using hemp derived terpenes since day one. This helps us better appeal more to cannabis and hemp aficionados- many of whom believe that these terps have better aromas, flavors and effects than their botanically sourced counterparts- without crossing the legal line drawn by Uncle Sam.
What’s The Difference?
Simply put: there isn’t one. A terp is a terp- no matter where it came from, a specific terpene will always have the exact same molecular composition and effects. For instance, limonene derived from citrus fruits is theoretically identical to limonene derived from the Lemon Haze Strain. However, it’s been established that cannabis and hemp plants can produce much greater yields of these terpenes than other plant matter can provide, allowing for greater expressions of aromas and flavors.
Experienced connoisseurs in our industry seem to be able to notice a difference between cannabis or hemp derived terpenes and botanical terpenes. Many of them claim botanical terps provide harsher hits and less flavor, but the jury’s still out on that. Though this is speculative, it would certainly explain why Silver Owl’s becoming the go-to brand for hemp fans that had less-than-favorable experiences with similar products from other companies like ours.
Hemp derived products continue soaring in popularity across the United States- and with the federal legalization of cannabis looming on the horizon, we’ve only seen the beginning of the market’s expansion. At this point, a majority of Americans are likely already aware of the effects produced by the use of the well-known cannabinoids like CBD and THC. However, not everybody who uses hemp derived products is aware of the fact that terpenes produce their own effects, which can play into the Entourage Effect and alter the experiences provided by the use of products containing them.
That’s right: not only do terpenes change the aromas and flavors produced by hemp derived products, they can alter the effects these products’ cannabinoids provide to their users. For example, our Blueberry Kush CBD Crystals have slightly different effects than our Tangie OG CBD Crystals, despite the fact that both contain nothing more than CBD Isolate and a specially formulated blend of terpenes.
Part Two: The Terps
If you’re wondering which specific terpenes we use and how they might affect you, we’ll break this down in our next article: A Guide To Terpenes Pt 2, which will be published within the next week. We’ll examine the most common terpenes found in our products, the effects they might provide, and which of our products contain them on an individual basis. Stay tuned!
*These claims have not been evaluated by the FDA. Our products are not intended, nor are to be used, to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If you or your loved ones have serious health concerns, please consult a physician,a trained medical or veterinary professional, or emergency medical services.