by Colin Curran
It’s 4:30 PM on Friday, your boss just left the office early, and you are 30 minutes away from seeing your friends to enjoy a night on the town. You are excited about the evening, but it’s been a long week, and you are not as awake as you need to be. You ran out the door this morning and left your Red Bull on the counter; you are scrambling to figure out how you will get your energy up in such a short time. Then, just like Thomas Edison, a light bulb goes off in your brain.
You recently bought these new cannabis edibles that say they give you energy. The purchase was made impulsively and with no knowledge of if it will work, but there is no time like the present to find out. Luckily, they are in your backpack, so you decide to take one 5mg gummy to see how it goes. As you leave work for the day and head to the T, you start to feel something. The sensation is the same as most edibles you have taken, and you're not sure if the excitement of the night or the edible is what is lifting your spirits. You look at the packaging and realize there is no difference in ingredients from other edibles you have had.
The questions arise: Can edibles and beverages have a Sativa, Indica, or Hybrid effect like smoked buds? Is it possible to get those effects without adding extra ingredients besides cannabis, like caffeine or melatonin? These questions are suddenly being thrust into the spotlight as effect-based marketing has become more prevalent.
Before answering the question above, we need to know how cannabis gets infused into edibles. Most companies use cannabis distillate when they are creating their edibles and beverages. Cannabis distillate is a purer form of weed; as Cannabiotix CEO Neema Samari explains, “Distillate is pure, raw, isolated cannabinoids, meaning that it’s high in potency,” The cannabis goes through an extraction process using either Ethanol or CO2 where it is cleaned of all impurities. In order to distill cannabis oil, it needs to be decarboxylated first - that means converting THCA into D9-THC (see my last blog post for more information on THCA) - which means you can eat cannabis distillate and get high without heating it.
We know how distillate gets us high, but can it cause an effect like you were smoking flower? In short, it is extremely unlikely. CEO Jordan Lams of Moxie, a cannabis company specializing in concentrates, explains that no matter what flower you start with before the distillation process, whether it’s an Indica, Sativa, or Hybrid, “All of that’s gone. What you’re left with is one constituent, which is almost characterless, other than the ratio of cannabinoids like THC and CBD.” What gives cannabis its flavor and intended effects are terpenes. I will dive into terpenes more in another post, but terpenes are removed from the cannabis during the distillation process, making it flavorless and removing any possibility of effect.
This doesn’t mean that any product you see that claims to give you energy or put you to sleep is lying to you. It most likely means that there are functional additives to the product besides cannabis distillate. Like in all food and beverage products, some additives are better for you than others, and you should check the label before making your purchase.
It is no secret that I work for Cantrip Seltzer and love our product and brand. One of the reasons I love Cantrip and what separates us from other infused drinks on the market is that all our beverages are infused with botanical terpenes, which help add to the aroma and flavor of our products. Although there are terpenes in each of our drinks, the amount is so tiny that it will not affect you one way or another - they all do the same thing, making the best-tasting cannabis beverage out there. The resulting effect that our drinks will give you is what we like to call The Fun Effect.
The Fun Effect is our way of saying let's get high in a cool, unique, and fun way. Honestly, you can drink your weed, what's cooler than that?! We get asked by budtenders and consumers alike, "How will Cantrip make me feel?" or "What is the effect I will get from Cantrip?" and the answer is simple. It will make you feel Fun! The "effect" Cantrip gives you is like the feeling of the first Spring day in Boston after a long winter or the feeling of using your massage gun after a hard workout or hike. It can hype you up for a party, or it can mellow you out after a tough day at work. The Fun Effect is whatever you need it to be, but above all else, it's just a fun time.
There is a time and place for everything and although we think Cantrip can be consumed in any situation, The Fun Effect can make some situations…… awkward. You are hanging out with your significant other and all of a sudden they say “We need to talk”. We cannot guarantee that your significant other will not break up with you while you are drinking Cantrip. Although internally you will be dancing on cloud 9 from The Fun Effect, we recommend putting on a sad face just for show. Let's be honest, you were kind of hoping they would end things and now you can share a Cantrip together as friends... or enemies, we don't know your life.
For our friends on Cape Cod this summer, we cannot guarantee that The Fun Effect will remind you to put on sunscreen. In all likelihood, you will be having so much fun you may not want to put it on... Put it on. You need it. New England is known for lobsters, not people who look like lobsters!