Frequently Asked Questions 1) What space or facility is required to safely run the machine? It is important to consider space and facility requirements for CBD processing equipment. Having the proper infrastructure and systems in place are essential to deliver a quality product. According to Precision Extraction Solutions, the typical size of a safe space or facility to run CBD processing and extraction equipment is 2,000 square feet. 2) Am I allowed to operate a machine at home? There are local rules and regulations about operating CBD extraction machines at home, and what is allowed or not allowed varies from location to location. The process for applying for a license with a local municipality is often straight forward. Applicants are encouraged to be well-informed and prepared for any questions though that may arise and to also consider retaining an experienced local attorney to help facilitate the licensing process. It is also important to make sure that a home meets local zoning regulations. 3) Does this machine require a license to operate it? Different states have different extraction laws, licensing processes, and regulations. According to manufacturers and industry guides, research is crucial to identifying a municipality that is likely to grant an operation license. Licenses depend on the type of operation and not on the type of machinery owned. More specifically, a business will need a different license if it is focused on growing hemp and another one if it’s focused on extraction. 4) What is the machine’s yeild? Extraction yield is what percentage of the end product is obtained from a specific amount of hemp used in the extraction process. The higher the extraction yield, the better the utilization of hemp. The amount of hemp plant material needed to produce a specific quantity of CBD oil differs based on the extraction method used. The yields for different extraction methods are as follows: CO2 extraction: 4 — 7%. Propane/butane extraction: 15%. Ethanol extraction: 10 — 15%. Ice water extraction: 5 — 7%. Water vapor extraction: 5 — 7%. Processing time for hemp material differs based on the extraction method used: CO2 extraction: 200 grams per minute (230mls/min). Propane/butane extraction: 4,500 grams of biomass every 90 minutes. Ethanol extraction: 80 lbs. per hour. Ice water extraction: 20 – 60 osc/min. Water vapor extraction: 20 – 60 osc/min. 5) What is the shipping cost and time to ship equipment? Based on the analysis of five different extraction machine manufacturers (LabX, MedXtractor, Apeks Supercritical, Precision Extraction Solution, and Pilotech) free shipping or fast shipping are not mentioned as part of the offering with any of the machines listed. Shipping costs ranges depend on the manufacturer/seller rather than the type of extraction. Companies do not list their shipping costs ranges online and potential buyers need to ask for a quote. 6) Doe the machine require assembly? Industrial machinery comes as a modular plug and is partially assembled. Most companies offer the service of assembly within their extraction machine package. A.E. Hodsdon Engineers’ range of CO2 extraction machines comes fully assembled. However, their most recent work for HempAmericana saw the machines custom-made and delivered in pieces and then assembled in the facility. BV Thermal System notes their machines come fully assembled. Ethos and EthosX machines by CapnaSystems come fully assembled. Precision KPD Series by Precisions Extraction comes in pieces. C-40 Centrifuge Extractor comes partially assembled. 7) What cleaning and maintenance is required for CBD extraction machines? Cleaning is needed either between runs or on a weekly basis for all extraction machines. The frequency of cleaning depends on the production volume for each machine. Machines come equipped with instructions for cleaning as part of the instruction manual, and the process usually involves cleaning the following parts: extraction and separator vessels, solvent supply tanks, lines and connections, temperature controllers/chillers, and compressor pumps. Oil level and running oil pressure for the extractor should be checked and recorded each week. We did not find any machines or manufacturers listed previously providing cleaning supplies with machines. Most maintenance can be performed by owners. As part of the training provided by manufacturers that offer complex machines, maintenance procedures are taught by the manufacturer. 8) How long has the company been in business? According to Precision Extraction, buying from an established company allows for the owner to be safe and not spend more money on further maintenance and potential issue fixing. A typical cost of setting up an extraction facility is between $400,000 and $800,000 and due to such large set up costs, established companies can provide a better overall service, including training and assembly. 9) Where is the manufacturer located? Location is important based on the fact that it can be expensive to ship heavy machinery and bulky parts internationally. Additionally, having a manufacturer that is US-based allows owners to contact them in case of emergencies or to provide additional professional services. Should Ask Questions 1) Which CBD extraction process should I use? This decision will largely depend on the end product. Here are examples of CBD products that will help determine the favored extraction method: CBD extract is an oily substance that ranges from a dark black paste to a honey color and consistency. CBD isolate is a crystalline substance that comes in either slab or white powder form and contains 99%+ potency of the single cannabinoid compound. Cannabidiol is a substance used in beauty products, including moisturizing gels/creams/lotions, masks, serums, cleansers, toners, bath bombs, soaps, beard oil, shampoo/conditioner, and lip balm. CBD capsules are a pill-form of CBD extract and work as a supplement. CBD concentrates are high potency extracts of the hemp plant which contain a high level of cannabidiol. CBD oil is an oil-carried form of CBD that is consumed sublingually by placing it under the tongue. CBD vape oil is the liquid content that is heated, turned to vapor, and inhaled when vaping. Water-soluble hemp extract powder is a product that allows consumers to mix CBD into almost anything. Extraction for consumable or inhalable CBD products The three most common methods for consumable or inhalable CBD products are solvent extraction, olive oil extraction, and CO2 extraction. Solvent extraction involves using ethanol, butane, propane, isopropyl, or alcohol to extract the CBD. It is considered to be one of the least expensive options as well as one of the fastest methods of extraction. Olive oil extraction is the oldest method of extracting CBD. The process entails the raw plant materials being decarboxylated (heated) to the desired temperature for a specific amount of time so that the chemicals in the plant are activated. CBD companies have recently started using the CO2 method of extracting CBD as it is the most advanced but also the most advised way of completing the extraction. It is a big investment and involves a complex procedure but allows for the creation of a potent, safe and chlorophyll-free extraction. Extraction for creams or other uses. The combination of CO2 and solvent extraction is recommended for extracting waxes and oils that go into creams or other uses. 2) Does this machine require expertise? The level of expertise needed depends on the extraction method: a. Ethanol extraction Using ethanol extraction involves heating the hemp plant material to”achieve decarboxylation (or the removal of carbon atoms from a carbon chain) and then soaking that plant material in ethanol for a period of time. As it can be done at home, there is no specific expertise required. b. CO2 extraction CO2 extraction requires specialized equipment in order to cool the CO2 below -69°F and under 75psi of pressure, which creates a supercritical state. After that, a chamber containing the cannabis plant material is filled with this CO2 where trichomes and terpenes dissolve into the carbon dioxide — the CO2 then passes through a separator, and CBD oil is left behind. There is no specific expertise required but specialist equipment is necessary. c. Butane/Propane extraction Butane/propane extraction is commonly known as solvent extraction and can involve using ethanol, butane, propane, isopropyl, or alcohol to extract the CBD. It is considered to be one of the least expensive options as well as one of the fastest way of extraction. It can be done at home by adding the liquid to the plant. No expertise is necessary. d. Ice water extraction Ice water extraction creates a powdery resin extract often referred to as hash. First, finely-chopped plant trimmings are mixed with either ice or dry ice. Second, water is added to the mixture, which is then is strained through a mesh bag. Finally, excess water is drained and the extracts are left to dry. It can be performed at home and no expertise is required. e. Water vapor extraction Water vapor extraction is done purely by a machine which vaporizes or combusts the raw hemp material. Heating elements first deliberately target vaporization points of hemp which results in different cannabinoid combinations that can be utilized when developing products. Secondly, vapor is processed to “recapture the activated cannabis molecules, then passes to the solubilization unit, where it is dissolved into a liquid and stored for further processing.” This method requires a specialist machine but specific knowledge of how to handle the machine. 3) What filtration processes are required to further purify CBD after completing a processing run with a machine? Once again, this depends on the CBD extraction method: a. Ethanol extraction None. b. CO2 extraction None. c. Butane/Propane extraction Winterization is the process to remove undesirable elements that were extracted from the plant, for example fats, waxes and lipids which is only needed when the oil was extracted at high pressure/high temperature (supercritical) because this intense extraction pulls everything from the plant, including material you don’t want in the final product. The extracted oil is known as crude oil, which needs filtration to become fine. d. Ice water extraction None. e. Water vapor extraction None. 4) What is the final purity of CBD after extraction? Ethanol extraction: 99% CO2 extraction: 98% Butane/Propane extraction: 95% Ice water extraction: 97% Water vapor extraction: 97% 5) Does the machine require additional parts to scale or expand operation? a. Ethanol extraction None. b. CO2 extraction Different systems are available for different-sized operations. A larger system is needed when scaling the operation. Hi-Flo™ FX2 Series is a commercial Supercritical extractor that is able to processing as much as 107 lbs. biomass daily. c. Butane/Propane extraction None. d. Ice water extraction Yes. Eberbach Model E5703 can be further padded with Mountain High Suckers. e. Water vapor extraction None. 6) What are the safety consideration for CBD extraction equipment? Ethanol extraction: None, the whole process is all done inside the machine, no specific requirements exist. CO2 extraction and butane/propane extraction: Depends on the country. In the US, safety equipment and special facilities are required by law for working with flammable solvents. Ice water extraction: None. Water vapor extraction: Specialist facility in order to regulate water vapor. 7) What warranties, if any, are included with an equipment purchase? Precision Extraction Tools offers guarantee included in the price. Pilotech offers a guarantee for an additional price. Right Stuff Equipment does not offer a guarantee, and neither do Cannabis Oil Tech nor Mixers. 8) Does the manufacturer offer training? Two methods will require machinery training: CO2 extraction butane extraction. Here are a few manufacturers we found that offer training with purchase: Precision Extraction Tools, SC Botanicals, Right Stuff Equipment, and Cannabis Oil Tech 9) How much monitoring is required for a machine while it runs? Ethanol extraction: After ethanol extraction, depending on products — there is sometimes a need for added purification. Personnel would need to check equipment and transfer the product to another machine. Machines used for ethanol extraction are X10 MSE (multi solvent extractor) and PX1 Hydrocarbon Extractor. CO2 extraction: XMOD MSE is a machine which requires no supervision as it allows for a “non-stop extraction operation“. Butane/Propane extraction: PX1 Hydrocarbon and PX2 Hydrocarbon are examples of machines that deal with butane/propane extraction. These machines need supervision but not constant monitoring. Ice water extraction: Eden Labs recommend hosting the water extractions in their lab due to the need of constant supervision. Water vapor extraction: Eden Labs recommend hosting the water extractions in their lab due to the need of constant supervision. 10) Does the machine constantly need to be fed hemp? Machines come in three automation settings, manual, semi-automatic and fully automatic. Manual, semi-automatic, and automatic machines are all mainly based on whether the final extraction process ends up being manual or not. According to manufacturers and different industry guides, each extraction method offers all three types of machines which depend on the scale of operation. For small operations, manual machines are recommended and those will involve a completely manual extraction process. Semi-automatic machines involve the use of manual valves and the need to load and unload the machine more often. Automatic machines do everything on their own, including extraction and loading the material. This also depends on how much hemp you want to process per day. Machines can process up to 100lbs of hemp daily. However, the most efficient extraction which is able to achieve such speed is the CO2 extraction. 11) Do you need to worry about solvent disposal? As CO2 and water are natural solvents, they do not require disposal but only require recycling for future uses. Solvents used in the solid extraction process such as butane, propane, hexane, isopropyl alcohol and ethanol can also be recycled and re-used. A machine which offers such a feature is the Maratek’s Solvent Saver Batch (SSB) solvent recycling & recovery equipment. The cost of recycling is equal to the cost of acquiring a recycling or recovery machine.