A Quick Guide to Types of Cannabinoids in Hemp Products

July 20, 2020
Different types of cannabinoids in hemp

A Quick Guide to Types of Cannabinoids in Hemp Products 

Ready to diversify your product line with some emerging cannabinoids? 

You’ve probably heard of CBG, CBC, CBN, and delta-8 THC. But how much do you really know about them? 

Here’s a quick guide to some of these top cannabinoids in hemp products today. We kept it simple, so it’s a quick read. When you’re ready to do a deeper dive with a NuSachi Product Formulation Specialist, let us know by filling out the short form at the bottom.

Cannabinoids in Hemp

CBD has taken most of the attention over the last 10 years, but there are plenty of other cannabinoids worth formulating with and it’s becoming more and more common to see products emerging that highlight them. With over 100 to choose from, this trend will likely continue for a while.

The top cannabinoids emerging today are an alphabet soup of similar-sounding names: CBG, CBN, CBC… and then there’s the emerging trend of Delta-8 THC. While technically legal, D8 is also psychoactive, so it may be in for more regulatory scrutiny as it becomes more popular. 

So what kinds of products feature these emerging cannabinoids? Let’s start with a quick review of CBD:

CBD (Cannabidiol) - non-psychoactive

CBD is by far the most prevalent non-psychoactive cannabinoid in hemp. When combined with THC, CBD actually lessens the intoxicating effects of THC itself.

Of all the cannabinoids, CBD has the largest pool of research on its positive medical effects. Charlotte’s Web made it famous for epilepsy, and ever since then the genie has been out of the bottle around public awareness of the positive benefits of CBD, and the fact that it is an entirely different thing from THC.

Given how many CBD products are available on the market right now, it can be hard for customers to figure out which ones are best. It can be helpful to find companies that openly disclose all ingredients and lab results. 

But the perk of market saturation for CBD products is that customers get to pick and choose the products they like best. 

Can’t take pills? No problem. There are plenty of CBD gummy options (many of which are organic and vegan, to boot). 

Prefer full-spectrum oil and tinctures? There’s plenty out there too.

But the options don’t stop there: there are topical creams, coffee and tea, protein bars, bath bombs, and even pet products. You have no shortage of options for quality CBD in a variety of products.

CBG (Cannabigerol) - non-psychoactive

CBG doesn’t have the market label presence that CBD has, but it still plays an important role in creating valuable hemp products as it’s the metabolic precursor to all the other cannabinoids. Whether you realize it or not, it plays an instrumental role. 

The main reason you don’t see a lot of it out there is because it’s found in levels of <1% in most hemp plants. However, don’t write it off just yet. It has the potential to be a rising star in the hemp world, as scientists are currently working on methods to achieve higher levels in crops.

CBG is available in a variety of products, many of which also contain CBD. Most cannabinoids work extremely well together and there are some great products on the market right now that focus on different combinations of cannabinoids based on the idea of the entourage effect

You can find CBG/CBD hemp tinctures, topical salves, and chewing gum, to name a few.

CBC (Cannabichromene) - non-psychoactive 

CBC is typically found in tropical varieties of cannabis. As is the case with CBG, CBC works synergistically with other cannabinoids.

CBC is often paired with other cannabinoids in products that focus on mild pain relief and skin treatments. CBC is available in tinctures and vape cartridges as well.

CBN (Cannabinol) - non-psychoactive

CBN has developed a reputation for aiding with sleep, though more research is needed here. CBN is the cannabinoid created from THC as it ages. As the cannabis plant ages, its terpene levels increase as well. So, it’s still uncertain whether the CBN or the terpenes produce that calming effect or if it’s a combination of the two, but this effect is typically what is sought by users of CBN products.

Some CBN products can include oils and tinctures, as well as vapes. Just like the other cannabinoids, you’ll see that many CBN products are blended.

Delta-9 THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) - psychoactive

Delta-9 THC has some psychoactive effects, unlike most of the minor cannabinoids found in hemp. These effects are lessened when it’s paired with CBD. THC creates a feeling of euphoria by stimulating the brain to release dopamine. THC, when taken apart from other cannabinoids, can affect someone’s concentration, memory, movements, and pleasure. 

Some of the most popular products include smokable flowers, pre-rolls, oils, and rosin

Delta-8 THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) - psychoactive

Delta-8 THC differs from Delta-9 THC by just a few atomic bonds, but it still creates a high that is roughly ⅔ the potency of Delta-9 THC. Whereas D9 THC can make concentration hard, D8 should keep you relatively lucid while you still feel the effects of being relaxed.

Delta-8 is emerging as a very popular form of THC, as it’s possible to enjoy the feeling of relaxation of it without losing focus. This is a growing market, so we expect to see many more products appear soon.

Most of the options for D8 THC that are currently available are in vapes.

Looking for Hemp Product Formulation?

If you’re feeling stuck, like you’re missing the last piece of the puzzle, and need some professional help getting your product created and brought to market, fill out the form below and book a call with a NuSachi Growth Advisor.  

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