If the future of concentrates isn’t bright, it’s at the very least lit. Marijuana Business Daily reported last month that, according to data collected by BDS Analytics, Colorado’s concentrate sales climbed to a dizzying 125%
in the first quarter of 2016. While some insiders point to an inertia that they believe will only continue to surge, eventually overtaking the still-more-popular marijuana flower, others aren’t so content to rest on their laurels. Highlighting advances as diverse as purified product and a user-friendly dabbing kit, technology is still finding unexplored vistas in cannabis concentrates.
UPDATE: Get Your Dab Tools Ready for Marijuana Sauce
We hadn’t heard of marijuana sauce when we first published this blog but you may have heard of the soupy substance by one of its other names: dab sauce, terp sauce, or terp juice just to name a few. A specific process is used (though that process seems to differ depending on who you ask) to create concentrates with terpene saturation so intense as to display a 60% increase of flavor molecules over standard dabs. There’s a bit of a culinary feel to sinking your dab tools into a container of marijuana sauce and then firing up the mini dab rig. And the results are often delicious thanks to the flavorful concentration of terpenes. Since opinions differ on what constitutes true terp sauce, you may want to check out our full blog post on highly concentrated marijuana sauce
to get an even better idea of the future.
Ambitious Predictions about the Concentrate Industry
Speaking with The Cannabist
in April 2016, Ralph Morgan, CEO of custom vape pen manufacturer OpenVape, detailed an ambitious perspective on the future of dabbing, predicting that concentrates will eclipse flower by next year. The sentiment was all but echoed by the Cannabist’s resident authority on concentrates, Ry Prichard, as he noted the popular use of marijuana concentrates in edibles. It’s easy to take Morgan’s enthusiasm with a grain of salt. After all, he is the CEO of a company with dab tools and vaporizers for sale, so considering his opinion unbiased is a bit absurd. According to the BDS Analytics data, first quarter results show flower still doing 3 times better than concentrates. In 2015, first quarter results showed flower selling over 5 times better than concentrates, so impressive strides have been made. But overtaking the insanely lucrative flower market may still be a tall order. This challenge is intensified by die-hard flower loyalists and a general ignorance, particularly among older generations, to the truth about the dabbing phenomenon.
A Dabbing Kit for Those Afraid to Dab
In 2016, Leafly
ran a feature on a dabbing kit that aims to take some of the danger and mystery out of the dabbing experience. While that may not sound like much fun from the sidelines, many smokers are hesitant to flirt with concentrates because of a perceived danger involved, no doubt amplified by the media’s consistent tone of cautionary horror. Add in a blow torch and a 1000°F titanium nail and the situation remains pretty unenticing for a 65-year-old hippy who still accidentally lights his hair on fire on occasion (hi, Dad). For those who feel the world of dabbing may be a bit too rough-and-tumble, desktop vaporizer company VapeXHale
developed the EVO; a more convenient spin on the classic dabbing kit. The EVO allows a dabber to drop a piece of wax or shatter inside a tube resembling that of a standard glass pipe. This pipe is then heated for 7-seconds (no blow torch required) before producing potent plumes of concentrate vapor. The full effect is achieved by manipulating air pressure to harness the potency of the concentrate without compromising flavor profiles. For seasoned dabbers, comparing the EVO to their trusted oil rig is a bit like a gear head comparing a Kia to their Hemicuda; some people just prefer getting their hands dirty. But for those uncomfortable with navigating the dabbing process or wielding a butane torch, the EVO stands to open up the wonderful world of cannabis concentrates.
While VapeXHale are committed to improving the dabbing kit, Guild Extracts
are bypassing the paraphernalia and trying to develop the source. They’ve developed a highly purified crystal concentrate, boasting an astonishing 99.677% THCA. CannabisNow
sampled one of the minute crystals earlier this year, describing the impact of the concentrate as exquisitely understated. However, Guild Extracts also offer a high terpene extract that, when used in conjunction with their crystal concentrate, unlocks a cosmic sensory overload sure to seduce die-hard dabbers. Currently priced at $100/gram and largely contained to the West Coast, Guild Extracts’ ultra-potent purified dabs are still relatively unknown in the market. Yet, high end concentrates for connoisseurs may be another means of reaching a wider audience frightened by fabricated media comparisons between dabs and crack.
There are flower aficionados that will never consider dabbing, dab rig jockies that will never go back, and euphoria chasers that straddle the line, enjoying both methods for different reasons. As far as we can see, this will always be the case. Will concentrates be the wave of the future, finding us trading in the glass pipe for the dab kit and never looking back? Probably not, though stranger things have happened.