Cannabis/Hemp Fractionation with SCF CO2
By extracting with CO2 only, it was possible to effectively separate the dark plant pigments and light volatile oils from the bulk extract (Figure 6). By generating three distinct fractions from a single extraction, extraction facilities are able to generate multiple processing streams and products from a single extraction. For example, in this scenario the dark CS1 fraction, ~20% of the total extract, was directed towards a CBD-A purification pathway encompassing chlorophyll and wax removal followed by SFC purification. Fractions 2 and 3 were combined and directed towards a more traditional pathway involving only wax removal.
The flexibility of CO2 extraction allowed for the generation of three distinct hemp extract fractions from a single extraction. Since there is variability inherent in working with natural products, the ability to generate multiple distinct processing streams from a single extraction is a major benefit to high pressure SFE with fractionation; this allows processors to develop specific workflows for a particular consistent desired outcome