What is CBDa?
CBDa is the acid form of the CBD molecule. It does not have the same properties as CBD and must be "activated". This activation and thus the transformation of CBDa into CBD is done during a process called decarboxylation. Its effects have been very little documented and some articles would lend him anti-inflammatory properties, however, it would act much less than CBD on the relaxation side.
What is decarboxylation?
As said above, it is a process which allows to transform the acid in molecule thus the CBDa in CBD, the THCa in THC ect. To make it simple, it occurs when the flower is in contact with a heat source. For example when you light your joint there is decarboxylation. If you want to know more, I will write an article soon.
In what quantities are the acids and molecules in cannabis flowers (THC or CBD or CBG) ?
This is the real question. So you have to know that without external intervention (heat) flowers have very high levels of the acid form and very little of the base molecule. For example, a CBD flower that has not been reduced (this is important) will have a CBDa rate equivalent to 90% of the total CBD rate. The total CBD content is calculated as follows: total CBD content = % CBD + (0.877 × % CBDa). This calculation allows us to know the total CBD level by simulating decarboxylation. A small light has just appeared in your brain.
But then why do we only talk about CBD and almost never CBDa?
It is very simple. You have to differentiate between the rates present in the flower and the rates displayed in the analyses. There are two types of analysis.
Analysis without decarboxylation :
This type of analysis is the most reliable in terms of quantifying cannabinoids because no changes will be made to the structure of the plant. These analyses will show the CBD content and the CBDa content - as well as the thca and thc content and the other acids/molecules - but also the total % of CBD present in the analysed product according to the calculation mentioned above.
Analysis with decarboxylation :
This type of analysis is the most common in France.
Its results remain reliable but controversial because they are less precise. The product undergoes a modification via a heat source so that all the acids are transformed into molecules. The CBDa disappears and becomes CBD. Therefore the analysis will only show the total CBD content without detailing the CBDa and CBD content.
Clearly, the total CBD content of the product analyzed is always the same, regardless of the analysis, but on one side there will be only marked CBD content (analysis with decarboxylation) and on the other side CBD + CBDa (analysis without decarboxylation).
Example : A flower with 5% CBD
Analysis with decarboxylation: 5% CBD (total)
Analysis without decarboxylation: 1% CBD + 4.57% CBDa = 5% CBD total
I repeat, the total CBD content remains the same!
If this is the case, why do most sites show the CBD content and others show CBDa and CBD?
Most sites that post CBD + CBDa levels are doing so to fool you?
Yes you got it right! They are banking on the fact that you don't know the difference between the two and usually justify a high total CBD level but this is complete bullshit. All CBD flowers without exception have a CBDa and CBD content that translates into a total CBD content once decarboxylation is done. It is the same for hash for example.
To make it simple, the sites that just mention the CBD rate talk about the total CBD rate present in the plant (CBD + CBDa) and those that mention the CBD + CBDa talk about the detail before decarboxylation. But at the risk of repeating myself the total CBD content is the same in both cases.
Are you saying that sites that claim to achieve very high total CBD levels because they add CBD + CBDa are lying?
Yes very clearly and I confirm it, they are fucking with the world. The total CBD content of 0.2% THC flowers (the cbd content displayed on almost all sites if you understood correctly) cannot exceed 13% without the addition of cbd, and most are between 4 and 8%. But that's another debate and we already made a topic on it. And so if a site claims to have more than 13% of total CBD with the pretext of adding CBD + CBDa then run away, the total THC level (THC + THCa) will be higher than 0.2% THC.
Adding CBD in soluble form to flowers does not increase the CBDa level, only the CBD level because the CBD isolate is already decarboxylated. Clearly if a site justifies its total CBD content with the addition of CBD in an artificial way but the analysis shows a CBDa content equivalent to 90% of the total CBD content then there is no addition of CBD.
If the analysis of a hash before decarboxylation, shows a very high rate of CBD compared to the rate of CBDa then it is not natural. And there was added materials to change its structure, its power with isolate, wax or other.
Soucre: Groad Bio