How Is CBD Produced: From Plant To Product

This article by Zora Degrandpre was originally published on Leafreport and appears here with permission.

Have you ever wondered about exactly how your CBD product is made? Well, here you can watch part of the process in a video tour of the Green Roads facility in Florida. You can watch a video showing how Green Roads CBD cream is produced, from start to finish. Our interviewer, Kristin, takes us on a step-by-step tour of the Green Roads manufacturing facility

Over the past few years, CBD has exploded onto the market. There are still lots of things that we all need to know when choosing which CBD brand to use. One of those things is how, exactly, is your CBD oil produced?.

Here is a general overview of that process.


Growing and Harvesting

First—someone has to grow the hemp! Remember, hemp contains less than 0.3% of THC, so is non-intoxicating (it won’t get you “high”). Hemp grows pretty quickly and ideally, it should be grown without pesticides, organically and sustainably. Hemp is high in biomass and can be used to return nutrients to the soil, so sustainable growth is “built in” to a certain extent. Getting organic certification is a long and expensive process—currently, many growers may use organic methods, but have not yet received the official USDA “Organic” certification.

Next, the hemp flower is harvested—but even before harvest, it is tested to ensure that the levels of THC are <0.3%– otherwise, it cannot be used to produce CBD. It is also tested for pesticide residue, heavy metals, and microbial contaminants. The rest of the plant is most commonly used as biomass and some may be used as feed….or to make hemp products.

The flowers of the hemp plant have the highest levels of CBD—so these flowers, containing the trichomes (hair-like projections of the flowers which contain resin glands) are harvested, tested, and cured (air-dried) for 3-4 weeks. The dried flowers are now ready for extraction—the process that “pulls” CBD (along with other cannabinoids and terpenes) out of the dried flower.

The Green Roads video doesn’t explore growing and harvesting hemp– but at Green Roads, all industrial hemp is grown in the US on registered farms and grows hemp that carries both Certificates of Origin (CoO) and Certificates of Analysis (CoA). [1]


Extraction is a physical-chemical process that is based on both the physical and chemical characteristics of whatever it is you are extracting. In the CBD world, this usually means ethanol or CO`2 extraction processes along with some form of distillation.

During ethanol extraction, the dried plant is placed into an alcohol solution and soaked for a period of time. CBD, other cannabinoids and terpenes dissolve into the ethanol, leaving behind the fibrous plant material.

CO2 extraction uses low temperatures to extract the CBD (along with the other plant constituents) and requires some expensive equipment—but …

Full story available on

More How Is CBD Produced: From Plant To Product