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ANJA Presents: The Difference Between Rosin, Resin, and "Live" Products

Ashley Robins
January 02, 2023
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There are many products, categories, and preferences that can be found in a dispensary. You may have noticed that some cartridges are resin, and others are rosin. On top of that, there are terms such as “live” and “solventless” thrown into the mix, making choice overload a reality for many consumers. All of these products are highly potent and offer a range of potential therapeutic benefits, but there are some differences among the products that are important to understand.

What is Resin?

Cannabis resin is a sticky, tar-textured product that is created by the cannabis plant. It is typically extracted from the plant using solvents like alcohol or butane and is then purified and concentrated to create a highly potent product. Some people may find that resin produces a more "heavy" or "couch-lock" type of high, as it may contain a higher ratio of CBD to THC.

The process for a safe resin product involves harvesting, drying and curing, extraction, purification, and packaging.

> Harvesting:
The cannabis plants are harvested and the buds are separated from the stems and leaves. Licensed dispensaries only sell products that are grown by licensed cultivators, ensuring that no pesticides or molds touch the products. Street cartridges are not held to the same high standards.

> Drying and curing:
The buds are then dried and cured to remove excess moisture and to improve the overall quality of the final product. Good quality weed is trimmed of excess leaves and hung in a dark room to dry. Once the buds are dried to a healthy moisture level, they are aged to maximize the potency and flavor of the final product.

> Extraction:
The dried and cured buds are then subjected to a solvent-based extraction process, typically using alcohol or butane. This process extracts the resin from the plant material and creates a sticky, tar-like substance. Regulated cannabis uses third-party testing labs to ensure that each batch has been cleaned of any metals or chemicals that resulted as a result of the extraction.

> Purification:
The extracted resin is then purified to remove any remaining solvents and impurities, resulting in a highly concentrated and potent product. There are a few different methods that can be used to purify cannabis resin, but the most common method involves the use of a vacuum oven or winterization.


What is Rosin?

Cannabis rosin, on the other hand, is a solventless form of concentrated cannabis. It is produced by applying heat and pressure to the cannabis plant, which causes the trichomes (the resin-producing glands) to release their oils. These oils are then collected and purified, resulting in a product that is similar in appearance and consistency to shatter or wax.

Rosin is typically more expensive than resin, as it is a more labor-intensive and time-consuming process to produce. It is generally considered to be a purer, more potent, and more expensive product than resin. Some people may find that rosin produces a more "energetic" or "euphoric" type of high, as it is typically higher in THC than CBD. That being said, some strains are naturally higher in CBD than other strains, so the ratio is dependent on more factors than just the extraction process used.

The main difference between resin and rosin is that rosin is typically heat-pressed, and resin is extracted using solvents. Once the buds are dried and cured, they are placed in a rosin press, which applies heat and pressure to the buds to extract the plant's oils. The resulting oil is collected and purified to create a highly potent and flavorful concentrate. In essence, imagine a giant hair straightener pushing down on a flower nugget; you now have a simplified version of a rosin press.

What about “Live” Resin/Rosin?

When you see a “live product,” it means that the product was frozen immediately after harvest. The intention behind this process is to preserve the plant's natural terpene profile, which can be lost or degraded over time through the drying and curing process. By freezing the cannabis plants immediately after harvest, live products are able to retain a greater number of terpenes and other plant oils, resulting in a product that is more flavorful and aromatic than regular rosin. Some people may find that live rosin has a more potent and enjoyable flavor and aroma than non-live products, which can make it a more appealing choice for use in edibles, tinctures, and other infused products. While both are highly potent concentrates, live rosin may produce slightly different effects due to the unique chemical makeup of the plant's oils. Choosing a product is simply a matter of preference.

To make live resin, the frozen cannabis plants are subjected to a solvent-based extraction process, similar to the process used to make regular resin. The resulting product is a highly potent and flavorful concentrate that is known for its strong aroma and terpene-rich profile.

Live rosin is a type of cannabis concentrate that is made using standard rosin production methods, with the exception that the cannabis was frozen after harvest rather than being cured in a dark ventilated room. It is produced by freezing freshly harvested cannabis plants and then using heat and pressure to extract the plant's oils, similar to the process used to produce rosin.

Too Long; Didn't Read:

Resin uses solvents for extraction; rosin uses heat and pressure. Anything "live" means that the flower was frozen immediately before harvest, rather than cured in the same manner that most smokeable flower is cured.

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