Rosin can be made a couple different ways. These techniques will produce vastly different results.
It carries a hefty price tag compared to other concentrates. It’s usually three times the price of your run of the mill wax and shatter. Rosin became extremely popular in 2018 as concentrates became more accessible in the legal industry.
With more people using concentrates now compared to any time in the past, many seek the cleanest option. Most concentrates are made with some type of solvent like butane or propane. Rosin is the exception.
Early Days of Rosin
The discovery of rosin is fairly recent, with widespread knowledge not becoming easily accessible to the home-extractor until around 2015. The new concentrate exploded because it is easy to make at home; all you need is a hair straightener and some parchment paper.
While pressing a nugget of cannabis between the hair straightener will get results, it is very minimal. Eventually, people invested in larger heat presses that could press large amount of cannabis for higher yields. While this was more effective, it wasn’t always the cleanest.
A problem with early rosin technology wasn’t so much the technology itself, but the product being used. Rosin is normally made from freshly harvested cannabis, that is then frozen for a period of time. This preserves the plant as close to its live state as possible, maintaining stronger terpene profiles prior to curing.
While it might have been fresh, the flower used was not always clean due to pesticides and other chemicals that aren’t flushed out prior to pressing. This is much more strictly regulated now, but many transitioned to a much more effective way of making rosin: Bubble hash.
Bubble Hash Rosin
Bubble hash is actually a usable concentrate on its own. While not as concentrated as waxes, shatters or live resins, bubble hash is one of the most basic and oldest methods of extraction.
Using micron filtered bags, the fresh frozen cannabis is submerged in ice water and stirred constantly to separate the trichomes from the buds. After the cannabis is separated and removed, you are left with a whitish-tan paste that eventually dries. This end product is bubble hash.
However, rosin makers in all their ingenuity discovered that you can avoid the excess plant matter that was normally pressed for rosin by using bubble hash instead. By first making bubble hash from the cannabis flower, extractors could get just what they wanted from the buds; their trichomes.
Pressing bubble hash into rosin was easier, more efficient, cleaner, and produced a superior product. This is also why rosin carries such a high price on a dispensary shelf. Not only is the cannabis extracted into bubble hash, but then extracted again for the cleanest, purest product possible.
The Future of Concentrates
Rosin and the methods and technology that has evolved with it has opened the door for many new concentrates to enter the market. The desire for “live” concentrates has grown exponentially, with more and more people willing to spend a little more for higher quality products.
Bubble hash extraction has seen growth as well, since most serious rosin makers will use bubble hash.The desire for tastier, cleaner and more cost-effective concentrates will continue to rise, and as rosin becomes more common it too will become more accessible to the average consumer.
But with everything in this industry, from flower to edibles to concentrates, you get what you pay for.