Anyone who has tried making their own cannabis drink will tell you it usually doesn’t go very well, mainly because it needs some kind of fat in order to work. Thankfully, new technology has made the idea of drinking cannabis a little more interesting.
Let’s go on a little adventure through the world of cannabis drinks to see what it all entails. No need to pack anything for the ride, just bring your love of cannabis (and maybe your reading glasses).
The first thing you need to know is what a cannabis drink actually is. Cannabis edibles are differentiated by the terms “edible cannabis solid” and “edible cannabis beverage.”
The second thing you need to know is that a cannabis drink is a beverage that’s been infused with cannabis—it’s that simple. Our cannabis drinks are infused with a cannabis extract, which we’ll get into a little later.
Making cannabis drinks isn’t as easy as throwing some weed in a glass of water and letting it steep. How great would that be, though? The whole cannabis drink production process is pretty complex, and one that we really shouldn’t be telling you about—it’s kind of a big secret. But if you promise not to tell anyone...we’ll go over some of the main points.
Without getting too technical, CO2 extraction is the process used to create cannabis extracts. Carbon dioxide gets compressed into a liquid state, and is combined with raw cannabis materials. This little combo is put under immense pressure and heat to get things going. Once it’s released, the CO2 is in a gaseous state (we’ve all been there) and all that’s left is a concentrated cannabis extract (we have NOT all been there).
Now that the cannabis extract is created, it needs to go through a refining process—it’s a little rough around the edges, metaphorically speaking. Short-path distillation takes the concentrated cannabis extract and uses precise vacuum and heat control to turn it into a refined extract, or cannabis distillate. Once it’s reached this state, the cannabis distillate is ready to be added into products. They grow up so quick, don’t they?
Now, cannabis distillate isn’t water soluble, so you can’t just add it to a liquid and expect it to dissolve. In fact, if we did that, all the THC and CBD would float to the top, leaving you with a really weird, unpleasant drinking experience; and we could never do that to you.
Instead, we use a process called emulsification, which is a fancy way of saying “it all gets blended together using science.” We use a blending agent that attaches to the cannabis distillate, allowing it to become more water-soluble. That way, it all comes together to create a smooth drinking experience. As for what ingredients we use to emulsify our cannabis drinks...we can’t really say—but they work, trust us.
Oh, and emulsions aren’t just a cannabis thing. Foods like whipped cream, salad dressing, mayonnaise, and butter are all common forms of emulsions. It just means that two liquids which normally don’t blend are forced into one unified (and in the case of whipped cream, delicious) product.
The term “cannabis drink” is pretty broad, and it kind of makes it sound like there’s just one option, but there are actually a few different kinds of drinks available. As for Tweed, we’ve got two types to offer: Ready-To-Drink cannabis drinks and Distilled CannabisTM (don’t worry, we’ll explain what that is).
There are risks associated with cannabis use. For information, search online "Health Canada - cannabis health effects".
We took three of our most popular strains and turned them into drinks. How cool is that?
Infused with natural and botanical flavours, ready-to-drink beverages (or RTDs) are ready when you are. There’s Penelope & Tonic, Bakerstreet & Ginger, and Houndstooth & Soda. Each can will only contain 2 mg of THC, with Penelope & Tonic also containing 1.5 mg of CBD. Oh, and not to brag or anything, but the tonic and ginger ale we use are both made in house. RTDs are made with our patented Distilled Cannabis™.
Where can I buy cannabis drinks?
Even though cannabis drinks might end up challenging the alcohol industry, don’t look for them in liquor stores just yet. For now, cannabis drinks will only be available in legal cannabis retail stores.
How much THC can be in a cannabis drink?
Keeping public safety in mind, cannabis drinks have a limit of 10 mg of THC per package. As for CBD, there’s currently no limit as to how much can be in a cannabis drink, so that’s pretty cool.
Where can I consume cannabis drinks?
This is good information to know, and right now there aren’t any specific public consumption laws surrounding cannabis drinks. However, each province sets their own public consumption laws, so make sure you read your provincial guidelines to find out what the rules are in your area. Cannabis in any format should not be consumed in the workplace or while driving.
Even though Health Canada splits them into “edible cannabis solids” and “edible cannabis beverages,” both are processed by your body the same way. That means the active compounds need to be metabolized through your gut and liver, which can take a little bit of time (between 30 minutes and two hours, lasting up to 12 hours or as long as 24).
Since cannabis drinks are a new format, let’s take a look at how to consume them responsibly.
How long does it take for cannabis drinks to kick in?
Like we just chatted about, it can take anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours for you to feel the effects of cannabis drinks. These effects can last up to 12 hours, but some may last as long as 24 hours. That’s why it’s important that you start low and go slow when consuming cannabis. You really never know.
How many cannabis drinks can I carry?
When it comes to cannabis drinks, they won’t be counting how many cans or bottles you have. Every label will contain an equivalency factor to dried flower so you can make sure you adhere to your 30 g of dried flower (or the equivalent) carry limit.
What about drinks from the illicit market?
What about them? The fact that they’re in the illicit market should tell you everything you need to know. Legal cannabis is regulated down to the number of times an employee has to wash their hands when handling the plant (seriously). Anything from the illicit market just doesn’t have those safety measures in place.
Plus, cannabis absorbs gross things like banned pesticides and heavy metals. When you buy from a legal source, there are rigorous tests to go through to make sure only high quality cannabis is being used to make products. When you buy from an illicit source? Well, it’s kind of a crapshoot.
If you want guaranteed dosing, product safety, and facility cleanliness...then you want to buy from a legal source.
Keep it away from kids (and pets)
Cannabis drinks don’t really look like cannabis, or at least not how most people are used to seeing it, which means you really need to make sure it’s kept locked up and out of reach of kids and pets.
Don’t drive high
At all. Ever. End of discussion.
Thanks for coming on the ride with us. Don’t forget to stop at the gift shop on your way out.