Harbor Hemp Company

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Connecticut's #1 CBD Brand

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CBD Extraction: How Is It Done And What Is Full Spectrum Oil?

By now, it seems like just about everyone has heard about CBD products. You might have a friend or family member who is always raving about the benefits of CBD.

You may have even heard people talking about these products in the news, on your favorite podcast or within the health and wellness community. Full spectrum hemp extract is getting a lot of attention, and it seems like people are only becoming more interested in it over time.

These products aren’t likely to be a fad or trend that people just forget about in a few years. Many people say CBD extract has inspired a general sense of wellness and optimized their enjoyment of life.

If you’re interested in these products, learn more about what they are, where they come from and how they’re made. Educating yourself will make it easier when you decide to shop for the best CBD products online.

Where Does Full Spectrum Hemp Oil Come From?

The name says it all. Full spectrum hemp extract is just a refined hemp product. A CBD extraction process uses pressure, temperature, solvents or a combination of the three to collect the most desirable natural components from the hemp plant.
This concentrated form of CBD and other organic compounds from the plant is hemp extract oil. Like almost anything else you can buy, the finished product’s quality will largely depend on the materials you start with.

What Separates Premium Hemp From the Rest?

Think about it this way: if you were going to buy lemon extract, would you want it made with dry, old lemons? Or would you rather it be made with fresh, aromatic fruit? Most people would almost definitely say they’d rather have something that’s made from superior plant material. After all, it hardly seems like there’s a point to extracting the essence of something underwhelming in its natural form.

The same goes for hemp extracts. The best full spectrum hemp oil is made by using the best natural hemp. Naturally, healthy plants often taste better, smell better and contain more cannabinoids like CBD. This is especially important if you’re taking a whole-plant approach by buying full spectrum hemp oil, as opposed to CBD isolate. Compare these two types of CBD extracts to see why the source material’s quality matters so much.

Full Spectrum Hemp Oil Vs. CBD Isolate

Most people eventually have the same question once they start shopping for hemp online: “is full spectrum CBD oil better than CBD isolate?” Most of the experts say they gravitate more toward full spectrum products, but it comes down to personal preference in some ways. Here’s what you need to know about the most popular types of CBD products.

Full Spectrum CBD

Full spectrum CBD is what you get from products that take a holistic approach to CBD extraction. In addition to CBD, full spectrum extracts also contain all of the other cannabinoids and terpenes found in hemp.

Terpenes, fatty acids and other plant-based compounds may help the CBD interact with your body more thoroughly. Since you’re getting all of the different organic compounds from hemp in your full spectrum hemp oil, it’s essential to make sure that the extraction company starts with excellent hemp.

Broad Spectrum CBD

Broad spectrum CBD is full spectrum CBD that’s just been refined ever so slightly in order to remove all traces of THC. While broad spectrum CBD will still have some of the cannabinoids and terpenes found in full -spectrum CBD, it will lose significant amounts of its minor cannabinoids and terpenes during the winterization process. With no THC, broad -spectrum CBD can give people that have concerns about even trace amounts of THC in their systems peace of mind.
CBD Isolate

CBD isolate is significantly different from full -spectrum hemp oil and even broad spectrum hemp oil. This process involves a thorough winterization process to remove terpenes, cannabinoids, waxes and other natural parts of the hemp plant.

This is ideal for people who only want pure CBD because, as the name implies, the cannabidiol has been isolated in this particular type of hemp extract. Many experts say that the whole-plant, full -spectrum approach is best, but some people still prefer to buy CBD isolate because they think it seems purer with the rest of the plant removed.

Hemp vs. Marijuana Vs. Cannabis

One of the biggest reasons some people don’t want full spectrum CBD is that they want to avoid trace amounts of THC. If that doesn’t quite make sense, just learn more about the differences between hemp, marijuana and cannabis.

Cannabis

The cannabis plant comes in many shapes and sizes. It’s related to the hops plant and some others you may have heard of. Here in the United States, we categorize different cannabis plants as either hemp or marijuana for legal reasons, which is especially important since there’s still a prohibition on marijuana on a federal level.

Marijuana

In the United States, marijuana is what they call any cannabis plant that contains levels of THC higher than 0.3%. THC is a psychoactive cannabinoid that has been legalized in many states (either medicinally or recreationally) but is still illegal on a federal level.

Hemp

Hemp is legal on a federal level here in the United States. To qualify as hemp, a cannabis plant must have THC levels no higher than 0.3%. Since hemp is legal, and CBD is legal, hemp-derived CBD products are also legal. In other words, for your full -spectrum hemp oil to be legal, it can’t come from a plant that contains more than 0.3% THC.

Is There THC in CBD Extract?

Hemp plants are technically allowed to contain up to 0.3% THC, though most hemp plants are grown to eliminate THC altogether when possible. Even so, there may be minimal amounts of THC in hemp oil. While this is more likely in full spectrum hemp oil containing all of the cannabinoids and terpenes from the natural plant material, some companies that claim to produce CBD isolate may not be testing their products well.

With all of that in mind, it’s essential to know the following before you buy CBD online:

  • Is it ok with you if your product contains trace amounts of THC? It’s not at all likely that legal hemp oil would cause you to become intoxicated or fail a drug test, but it’s also not entirely impossible.
  • How much CBD oil will you be enjoying? Even trace amounts of THC can add up.
  • Do you trust the company that runs the online CBD store? If you don’t trust the company’s integrity, or if they don’t publish their lab results, there’s no way of knowing what’s really in their oils.

Learn more about how to extract CBD in part two to determine what makes a good CBD Extract.

We’ve already covered the different types of CBD oil, so now you’re ready to get into more details about how CBD extraction works. When you understand the process that turns the plant into hemp extract oil, you’ll see how these convenient products preserve the original material’s natural essence. Many smart people are working to figure out how to extract CBD more effectively, but you don’t have to be a scientist to understand some of the basics.

How to Extract CBD

To make a CBD extract, you need to start with either hemp or marijuana. Once you have your source material, you can make full spectrum hemp oil in a few different ways. While we make our end products in-house, we do not buy hemp flower in mass or handle extraction. Instead, we partner with the best extractors in the industry to obtain our raw materials. In order to meet our high standards, we vet our extraction partners carefully and require full traceability to confirm the quality and purity of their source material and extractions.

Ethanol Hemp Extraction

The most common way to perform a CBD extraction is to use a liquid solvent like ethanol (alcohol). Ethanol is non-toxic and relatively easy to evaporate, making it a good choice for creating hemp extracts. Once the liquid has pulled the cannabinoids out of the plant by running over it, the alcohol can be evaporated. At this point, all that’s left are the cannabinoids, terpenes and other natural organic compounds from the plant.

Propane or Butane Extraction

The other way to extract CBD from hemp is to use a solvent like propane or butane. This solvent is usually washed over the hemp material in a large piece of lab equipment called a closed-loop extraction system. Like other types of solvents, the gas will strip the cannabinoids out of the plant material to be collected with the solution. Making hemp concentrates in this way requires a careful purging process to remove all of the solvents at the end. Propane and butane are not safe for human consumption, so there can’t be any left in the final product.

CO2 Hemp Extract

The other common way to extract CBD is by using carbon dioxide (CO2) in a supercritical form, which is another way of saying it’s pressurized into an especially dense state that’s somewhat like a liquid and a gas at the same time. This process works somewhat similarly to the processes that run with other kinds of solvents. Working with CO2 is great because it’s relatively easy to change from a solid to a liquid to a gas by manipulating the pressure and temperature. This allows hemp oil producers to extract cannabinoids from hemp very efficiently with CO2.

A CO2 extraction process normally requires three different chambers. In the first chamber, there’s liquid CO2 that’s pressurized enough to turn the carbon dioxide into a liquid. The second chamber is full of your plant material, which is legal hemp in this case. The extraction machine pumps highly-pressurized liquid CO2 into the second chamber, where the temperature is slightly higher. Since the temperature is higher, the carbon dioxide becomes a supercritical gas, which quickly removes cannabinoids and other desirable compounds from hemp.

The CO2 washes over the plant material until it’s essentially absorbed the cannabinoids from the hemp. Once the cannabinoids are out of the hemp and into the solution, the solution moves into the hemp extraction system’s third chamber. The pressure is dramatically reduced in the third chamber until the CO2 turns back into a normal gas like it normally would be at room temperature. The carbon dioxide gas releases the cannabinoids and rises, so the extracted hemp oil collects at the bottom of the chamber.

Oil Extraction

This is the final type of extraction process we’ll cover. This CBD extract is made simply by heating the hemp in oil. Doing this allows the cannabinoids to be activated and released from the hemp, transferring into the oil. Some manufacturers use olive oil, MCT oil or something similar.

No matter which of the extraction processes are used to create hemp oil, the extract will contain other cannabinoids besides CBD. CBD should be the most prevalent cannabinoid in the hemp oil (assuming actual hemp was used, not marijuana). Some extraction processes move on to a winterization stage to remove other natural compounds and isolate the CBD. Still, full spectrum hemp extract includes everything that was pulled out of the plant.

In addition to CBD and other cannabinoids, you can find all of the following things in full spectrum hemp oil:

  • Terpenes – these are like the essential oils that give cannabis its unique flavor, and some believe they have therapeutic effects
  • Amino acids
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Vitamins A
  • Vitamin B (various types)
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Minerals like magnesium, iron, calcium and zinc

How Is Full Spectrum Hemp Oil Tested?

It’s critically important to test any kind of hemp oil. Even if something is labeled as CBD isolate, you should still see the third-party lab tests that back that up. Testing is important for three primary reasons:

  • It confirms the level of CBD products. One of the biggest problems we see in this industry is that some companies sell products that are marketed to contain specific amounts of CBD, but the products themselves don’t live up to the labels. To put it quite simply, this is a dishonest way of doing business, and it’s not right to charge people without delivering the quality product they’re paying for.
  • Even beyond the quality and consistency of hemp oil, purity is one of the main reasons we have all of our hemp extracts tested thoroughly. We want to know if there are any leftover solvents or other impurities that might not benefit our customers. If a product isn’t tested and it isn’t from a company that you have good reason to trust, there’s just no way of knowing how it could be contaminated.
  • We’re independently lab-testing for THC content in our final products. This is a big one, especially when you’re buying full spectrum hemp oil. In addition to CBD, full spectrum hemp extract also contains other phytocannabinoids like CBN, CBG, CBC, CBDA and more. Since we want it to be legal throughout the United States, we have to test every batch to make sure it contains no more than 0.3% THC. Please see our Lab Results page for more information.

Buy Full Spectrum Hemp Oil Online

At Harbor Hemp Company, we partner with the top extractors in the industry who use state-of-the-art technology and equipment to turn premium hemp flower into a superior CBD extraction that we used to make our premium, finished CBD products. Our full spectrum hemp oil, along with all of our products, are always third-party tested to ensure quality, purity and cannabinoid levels.

Our family-run business is on a mission to make reliable hemp products available to everyone. Our family has been sourcing oils and plant extracts since 1936, and we use the generations of experience to make the best hemp-derived CBD oil we possibly can.

Order some today to see what makes our full spectrum hemp oil so special.

Try Harbor Hemp’s Full Spectrum CBD Today!

Featured Image: HQuality / Shutterstock

Image Credit: r.classen / Shutterstock

Harbor Hemp Company Achieves Current Good Manufacturing Practices Certification (cGMP) Second Year in a Row

As we wrap up 2020, we’re thrilled to announce that Harbor Hemp Company has once again achieved our cGMP (Current Good Manufacturing Practices Certification) through Eurofins Scientific. Now, in addition to being one of Connecticut’s first licensed CBD manufacturers, we’re proud to have documented proof that Harbor Hemp Company follows best manufacturing practices at each step in our process. 

What does this mean for you as a CBD consumer?

While many CBD companies may claim to follow Good Manufacturing Practices, few have been certified. Transparency is how we cultivate trust in an under regulated industry, and we believe that certification is the best way a CBD industry leader can provide peace of mind to its customers. 

Committed to manufacturing high-quality CBD products

It’s Harbor Hemp’s mission to continue shining as a beacon of a trust in a sea of CBD confusion. And as one of New England’s leading CBD brands, we’re committed to continuing to provide you with the highest quality and safest products on the market. 

Our team of CBD specialists is here to help

If you have any questions about our CBD manufacturing process, ingredients or lab testing, our team of CBD specialists is always here to help. Just drop us a note at [email protected].

How to buy CBD: 5 things to consider

Buy CBD

You’ve decided that you’re ready to try CBD, but with so many CBD brands available in today’s market, shopping for CBD can be confusing and overwhelming. From dozens of national brands to thousands of local brands, such as Harbor Hemp Company’s New England-made, small batch CBD products, it seems there are endless options to choose from. 

Whether you’re looking to switch to a new CBD brand or are just beginning your CBD journey, here are 5 things to consider to help you find a CBD brand that you can trust. 

Research the company behind the CBD brand

When considering your CBD options, it’s a good idea to do your research on the company behind the brand before making a purchase. Here are few things to look for:

  • Company Website: Hopefully, the company has a website. If they do not, this might be your first red flag that the brand you’re considering is not legit. If they do have a site, does it look professionally designed and is it easy to use? Look for information about the company along with informative FAQs, easy-to-access lab reports, educational content, such as a blog, and easy ways to contact the team. 
  • Emails & Newsletters: A great way to get to know a brand is to sign up for their email list. This can be a quick way to connect with a company and gain access to special offers and educational content. 
  • Social Media: Check out the brand’s social media pages to see the types of content they share. If the pages appear to be professionally done with original content, this is usually a good sign that you’re dealing with a company that is excited to engage with its customers. Beware of brands that have social feeds filled with posts that look blurry or content that seems to be mostly made up of pirated memes. 
  • Google Reviews: CBD companies may publish customer reviews on their own site, but these reviews are not always legit. Google Reviews, on the other hand, are designed to be neutral and cannot be deleted or altered by a company, making them a great place to get real feedback. 

Understand the brand’s CBD manufacturing practices

When you’re researching the company behind the CBD brand that you’re thinking about trying, take a close look at the company’s manufacturing practices. Here are some things to look out for:

  • Manufacturing or Production History: The CBD industry is so new that there aren’t many CBD brands that have been around for more than a few years. However, it’s a good idea to look for companies or leadership that have experience in manufacturing or production. Ideally, you want to look for brands that have years of experience serving similar industries, such as food and beverage. For example, Harbor Hemp was founded in 2018, but our family-owned brand has been sourcing oils and plant extracts since 1936. And today, we’re leveraging generations of industry knowledge to create the highest quality CBD products on the market.
  • cGMP Certified: Some CBD brands may claim to follow GMP or “Good Manufacturing Practices,” a set of regulations issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration under the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. But if they have not completed a third-party audit to become cGMP certified or “Current Good Manufacturing Practices Certified,” there is no documented proof that they are in fact following best manufacturing practices. Audits can be expensive and time consuming and require cGMP certified brands, like Harbor Hemp, to prove that they are using the strictest internal controls, procedures and documentation when manufacturing CBD products. 
  • Hemp Licensing: Some states, such as Connecticut, require hemp manufacturers to be licensed. Whether this is a requirement in your state or not, it’s a good idea to make sure that any brands you’re considering are manufacturing in a licensed facility with the documentation to back it up. 

Inspect the packaging

Don’t be fooled by pretty packaging. Attractive packaging may draw you to a particular brand, but with CBD products, safety can hide in the details. When comparing different brands, it’s important to look for key compliance and safety information on the packaging including: 

  • Professional Label: Does the label look professionally designed and printed? Is it printed on water-resistant paper? If the label looks “handmade” or like it was printed on an old inkjet printer, it’s probably a good idea to pass. 
  • Tamper-evident Seals & Child Proof Packaging: Since CBD is a product that is used for wellness, it’s important that the brand takes certain safety precautions. Look for packaging with safety features such as tamper-evident seals on caps and child proof tincture tops. 
  • Batch or Lot Number: High-quality CBD brands lab test each and every batch of products for quality and purity. Look for batch or lot numbers on a product’s label that corresponds to easy-to-access lab results on a brand’s website. If the brand you’re considering does not have lab results posted by batch, or worse, only has one “sample lab report,” this could be a red flag. 
  • QR Code: QR codes have become industry standard allowing consumers to easily access lab reports. When comparing bottles from different brands, look for the one that has a QR code. If you have a QR code scanner app on your smartphone, you can even test out the code to make sure that it successfully links to current lab tests.
  • Best Buy Date: CBD levels in a product may lose potency over time, like most consumable products. Look for “Best Buy” or “Use By” dates stamped onto the label or bottle. Note that CBD products generally have a shelf life of 6 to 12 months as long as the bottles are properly stored. 
  • Review the Ingredients: Truly transparent brand will publish the product’s ingredients on the label as well as the website. Watch out for anything that says “hemp seed oil” and look for brands that use CBD derived from US-grown hemp that is non-GMO and pesticide-free.

Contact the company

If in doubt, contact the company directly with any questions you may have. A trustworthy CBD brand should have no issues openly discussing any of your concerns. And if they can’t provide you with answers to all of your questions or you get a strange vibe, it may be a good idea to move onto a different brand. 

Still have questions about how to select the best CBD brand?

Our team of CBD specialists is always here to help. Just drop us a line

Where can I buy CBD oil? The 3 best options to buy quality CBD products

Curious about trying CBD? You’re not alone. With the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, the hemp-derived CBD industry has become a booming industry. And experts at the Brightfield Group, a leading market research firm, are calling CBD “the next healthcare phenomenon” and predicting that the hemp-derived CBD market will reach $22 billion by 2020.

But what exactly is hemp-derived CBD and where are the safest places to buy it?

What is CBD?

CBD, or Cannabidiol, is one of over a hundred naturally-occurring cannabinoids found in industrial help plants. Unlike THC which can cause users to “get high,” CBD is non-intoxicating. And it is believed that CBD interacts with receptors in your body’s endocannabinoid system to help promote general health and wellness.

Is it legal to buy CBD?

Yes. CBD derived from industrial hemp is federally legal. However, it’s a good idea to check your local and state laws for specifics. The laws are different in the UK which is why you might want to learn more about CBD and drug tests in the UK by exploring some more articles online.

3 best places to buy high-quality CBD

With the boom of CBD, it seems you can find CBD being sold everywhere, from health food stores to spas and even gas stations. You can even shop for CBD online from the comfort of your own home. But where are the safest places to buy CBD?

Speciality Stores

If you want to shop local for your CBD, your best bet is to check out the “mom and pop” stores in your area. From natural grocers to yoga studios, golf pro shops and smoke shops (aka head shops), many speciality retailers are now carrying CBD. As an added bonus, particularly for first time CBD users, brick and mortar stores often have trained staff that can help you pick out the best CBD products for your personal needs and may even have some CBD samples for you to try before you buy.

Dispensaries

If you live in a state where medicinal marijuana is legalized, you may be able to purchase CBD at a dispensary, like this Colorado dispensary. Dispensaries are regulated by the government and typically sell CBD derived from the marijuana strain of the cannabis plant rather than the federally-legal hemp-derived CBD. Keep in mind, this type of CBD often has higher levels of THC and you may need a prescription to purchase it. You can always talk to the employees at your local michigan dispensary for some more advice regarding cannabis.

Online

Shopping online is one of the most convenient ways to purchase many kinds of CBD products, including tinctures, topicals and edibles. Companies like Harbor Hemp, and other reputable CBD brands, generally sell their full line of products online and will ship directly to your house. In the UK? Check out CBD Queen for a more local option.

Be sure to look for brands that have their third-party lab results and product ingredients easily accessible on their site, along with an easy way to contact customer service with any questions. Also, be sure to watch out for brands that market their products as “hemp oil” or “hemp seed oil” with no mention of CBD or Cannabidiol on their labeling or ingredients list. These products often contain little to no CBD.

Shopping Online with Harbor Hemp Company

Whether you’re looking for Full Spectrum or Zero THC products, Harbor Hemp Company is a family-run wellness company that offers a variety of small batch, New England-made CBD products.

When you purchase your CBD directly from Harbor Hemp Company, or from one of our trusted retailers, you know that you’re buying tinctures, topicals and pet products that are made with US-grown, non-GMO and pesticide-free hemp-derived CBD in a cGMP certified, licensed hemp manufacturing facility.

And you can check the potency and purity of all Harbor Hemp products by viewing the batch test results in our Lab Results database, on every product page or even by scanning the QR code on our product labels.

Still have questions about where to buy CBD?

Our team of CBD specialists is always here to answer your questions about Harbor Hemp CBD products or CBD. Just drop us a line.

Harbor Hemp Company Achieves Current Good Manufacturing Practices Certification (cGMP)

As we begin 2020, we’re thrilled to let you know that Harbor Hemp Company has recently achieved cGMP (Current Good Manufacturing Practices Certification) through Eurofins Scientific. Now, in addition to being one of Connecticut’s first licensed CBD manufacturers, we’re proud to have documented proof that Harbor Hemp Company follows best manufacturing practices at each step in our process. 

What does this mean for you as a CBD consumer?

While many CBD companies may claim to follow Good Manufacturing Practices, few have been certified. Transparency is how we cultivate trust in an under regulated industry, and we believe that certification is the best way a CBD industry leader can provide peace of mind to its customers. 

Committed to manufacturing high-quality CBD products

It’s Harbor Hemp’s mission to continue shining as a beacon of a trust in a sea of CBD confusion. And as one of New England’s leading CBD brands, we’re committed to continuing to provide you with the highest quality and safest products on the market. 

Our team of CBD specialists is here to help

If you have any questions about our CBD manufacturing process, ingredients or lab testing, our team of CBD specialists is always here to help. Just drop us a note at [email protected].

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