Terepenes and Temperature: Solutions and Dilutions

The purpose of this blog is to discuss proper usage of terpenes and flavors when mixing these materials with active THC concentrate. Many producers run into problems when using these materials so we will discuss each of them and how one should combat these issues.

One of the most common problems we hear is, “why does my distillate change color when I add terpenes to them?”

This could be for a number of reasons, but many times it is because too much heat was used in the mixing process, causing the material to oxidize faster than normal. All THC will change color over time as it is exposed to oxygen, but the addition of volatile materials and large amounts/durations of heat can cause this process to speed up quite rapidly. The best way to combat this is to, if possible, eliminate any heat in the process, or at the very least control it. Do NOT exceed 110 F when using flavors and or terpenes.

Now, many will say, “but I can’t, my product needs much more heat in order for me to manipulate it the way that I want to.” Well…patience is a virtue everyone. THC distillate may be warmed up, under very low heat; the issue is that it takes a while compared to higher amounts of heat, and that doesn’t sit too well in most production environments. Avoiding heat is the best way to improve this issue and the overall consistency of your product. Luckily, if one feels this is impossible for them, there is another solution—make a Dilution!

Instead of mixing the terpenes with the entire batch of THC concentrate, mix your solvents and terpenes with a small percentage of your batch. For example:

Say you have 100g of distillate and need to use 5g of flavor. Take 5g of distillate, warm it up under very low heat (it wont take that long as it is a small volume 😉) and mix with your additives. Then, heat up the remaining 95g of distillate as you normally would. Once it has reached your preferred viscosity, remove the large batch from heat, let it sit for a minute or two, and then add your 10g dilution to the warmed up 95g distillate. This should help your additives avoid direct heat contact and minimize production issues.

Another solution is a heat bath or heat blanket. Most producers use a heat bar/stir plate when warming material up, which is usually fine for small volume, but in order to heat up a large batch efficiently, one of these solutions could help. Normally, when using a heat bar/stir plate, the beaker is warmed up from the bottom to the top, requiring the user to pay attention and manually do some mixing as not the entire product is being warmed up at the same time. This can cause parts of the batch to burn if one is not careful, and in general, it can take a while. With a heat blanket, or bath, you can heat up your entire batch at the same time and under a consistent temp, allowing the user more control with less effort, and a better end result.

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