What is THC-A Flower?

What is THC-A Flower?

A relatively new phenomenon has taken the hemp industry by storm: "THCa flower".  The vast majority of the population has never heard about it and yet it is moving briskly in the remaining US states that do not yet have recreational marijuana programs.  Why?  It's simple: THCa flower is compliant marijuana.  Legal weed.  It is not treated with anything, there's no Delta-8 THC involved.  It's not manipulated in any way from the farm to the user, and it gets you high with good old-fashioned Delta-9 THC.  How?  Continue reading and we'll break it down.
Let's assume an example of dispensary or black market cannabis that has a THC content of 25%.  Few people know that very little of this is in the form of Delta-9 THC, but if you've ever tried eating a bud or two, you have likely found that you don't feel anything.  This is because most of that 25% THC is in the form of THCa, which is not psychoactive at room temperature.  Sure, there's a bit of Delta-9 in any bag of weed, but generally not all that much.  

However, things change when you heat it up, as people do to make butter for cookies or to make extract for gummies.  The application of heat is what's known as "decarboxylation" in the industry, but it just means to heat up the flower.   This can be done with an oven for about 30-45 minutes at roughly 240 degrees (the time and temperature are a bit of an art but I can tell you that those numbers I just provided work just fine) OR it can be done quickly, with a Bic lighter.  Either way, all that THCa turns into Delta-9 THC once it's been heated.  Now, all 25% of our THC in the example above has become Delta-9 THC which, as you probably know, is definitely psychoactive. 

So, that's how "regular" cannabis works.  Let's now talk about THCa flower.  Like the first example, we'll say this THCa flower also has 25% THC.  Like the first example, most of that THC is in the form of THCa.  The only difference is that the growers have bred their plants to minimize the natural Delta-9 content and maximize the THCa content.  The result in the current example is cannabis with less than .3% Delta-9 THC with THCa content of about 24.7%.  After lighting it, the THCa converts to Delta-9 and all 25% of the THC is now Delta-9, just as in the first example.

So, the short version is: THCa flower is not "fake" cannabis or "cannabis lite". It is the real deal, with some strains even approaching 40% THC!  If you are in a state with a recreational or medicinal marijuana program, this isn't all that big a deal.  For those of us in states where cannabis is still prohibited, it's a very big deal indeed!


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