Activating the CBD
CBD normally exists as an acid form in the hemp plant called Cannabidiolic acid or CBD-A. The acid refers to the weakly acidic carboxyl group that is attached to the CBD molecule. This functional group must be removed from the molecule in order to increase the bioavailability of the CBD so that the beneficial effects can be realized. This is accomplished by heating the plant, but care must be taken to not degrade the other beneficial compounds while still ensuring all of the CBD-A is converted to CBD. Any remaining CBD-A in the final product is wasted potential as it will not be properly metabolized by the body.
Heating the hemp stimulates the reaction shown above where the carboxyl group is released as CO2 leaving the bioavailable form of the cannabinoid, CBD. At Mile High Labs, we use a forced air laboratory oven with precise temperature control so we can complete the process most efficiently with full decarboxylation but minimal loss of terpenes or degradation of cannabinoids.