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If you’re interested in using cannabis for the first time, you’re definitely starting at a good time in history. And if you’ve been using weed for a while— for medical or recreational reasons—you probably know by now that the landscape is constantly evolving. There’s always something new to try which brings us to the topic of live resin.
The constant change means you may not be up to date about the latest products on the market. And here’s a fact you may not be aware of, no matter which group you belong to: there are many methods apart from smoking that you can try if you’re using cannabis. In fact, smoking isn’t the even most popular method anymore!
With concentrates becoming more and more available, the cannabis game has completely changed. Today, you’ll find many concentrates to choose from and we’re here to provide you the insight you need to make the proper choice.
You may be familiar with shatter, but have you heard of the new “living” concentrate called live resin? If not, we’re here to give you the full rundown on what live resin is and how live resin versus shatter stacks up!
Before we dive into a comparison between these 2 popular concentrates, we’ll start with a few definitions to ensure we’re all on the same page.
Shatter is a cannabis concentrate with a glass-like appearance and a golden amber colour. This concentrate has earned its name for its tendency to “shatter” when dropped or pulled apart. Like many other cannabis concentrates, shatter uses dried and cured flower in the production process.
In order to be properly smoked and consumed, the excess moisture found within freshly harvested cannabis plants first have to be removed. The drying and curing process will not only remove the excess moisture, it’ll also “mature” the plant’s THC and make it more bioavailable for our bodies. What this means is in order for us to properly feel the psychoactive effect, cannabis first has to undergo this drying and curing process.
Live resin is a cannabis concentrate that’s golden coloured and jelly-like in appearance. It has a texture closely resembling that of brown sugar.
What distinguishes live resin from other cannabis concentrates is its unique manufacturing process. Instead of using dried and cured cannabis, live resin utilizes weed that has been flash-frozen as soon as it’s harvested. Additionally, the weed is consistently kept below freezing throughout the entire manufacturing process until the final product is created.
While drying and curing weed is an essential step in processing cannabis, the drying and curing process also removes many of the plant’s beneficial trichomes (kief) and terpenes. As excess moisture is drawn out, the plant’s compounds also degrade in the process. By keeping temperatures constantly low throughout, live resin producers are better able to preserve that freshly-harvested weed taste, flavour and aroma without the use of any special chemicals or solvents.
Clearly both of these cannabis concentrates are well respected, but what are their unique features?
We’ve talked about the curing and drying process and what kind of effect it has on the final product. Since live resin is kept below freezing temperatures, the plant’s terpenes, cannabinoids and trichomes are kept perfectly intact. You’ll be able to experience a “full-spectrum” effect as well as a more aromatic taste and flavour.
Since live resin has all of its terpenes and cannabinoids intact, its final THC content might not be as high as other concentrates. Shatter, budder and wax uses weed that has undergone a curing process which increases the THC level of the starting weed material. However, this also means that the final taste and aroma of shatter and other concentrates like it will be incomparable when tried alongside the likes of live resin.
As a baseline, you can expect shatter to have a THC level of 70-90%. Live resin – because of its high terpene levels – will typically have a THC content ranging from 60-80%. Both of these cannabis concentrates are potent enough to impart an intense psychoactive effect. Novices be warned!
As we’ve mentioned before, the cannabis market is constantly evolving and new products are being introduced all the time. The introduction of a new kind of cannabis concentrate, rosin, has many cannabis enthusiasts and novices excited. Similarly to live resin, rosin has another special characteristic about it – it doesn’t use any solvents in the production process.
To clarify, you need solvents to make concentrates like shatter, budder and wax. Even live resin isn’t exempt from requiring a solvent to extract the plant’s beneficial compounds.
That’s what makes rosin so special. Although weed used in the production of rosin has already been dried and cured, there’s no additional solvents or chemicals needed to make this cannabis concentrate. Manufacturers simply apply heat and pressure to the cured cannabis and compress the weed until a sticky, gooey substance is extracted from the flower.
The colour of rosin will range from light to dark green and similar to live resin, it can sometimes look wet in appearance. Unlike shatter, wax and budder, rosin has a unique taste that’s more true to the aroma of the actual flower than anything else.
With legalization increasing cannabis accessibility for consumers, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t venture out and try some live resin or rosin for yourself.
Don’t get us wrong, shatter is a great concentrate and has definitely cemented its role in the cannabis community as one of the best and oldest concentrates but you’ll be doing a disservice to yourself if you don’t try the fresh taste of live resin or the solventless experience of rosin.
If you’re feeling scared, don’t be. Concentrates are nothing more than a concentrated form of cannabis. If you’re a first timer, remember that a little goes a long way and to never bite off more than you can chew at once. Happy toking!
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