Full Spectrum, Broad Spectrum, Narrow Spectrum, and CBD Isolate

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If you have been following local news, you may be aware that recently in Hong Kong, the government is taking an aggressive stance to crackdown on CBD products with THC. Read on to find out why and how to pick a CBD product that is safe to purchase and consume in Hong Kong. 

Whether it’s at a cafe in Central, pop-up at Landmark, or even at City’super, you will find different spectrum CBD oil available.The different spectrum of CBD oil are Full Spectrum, Broad Spectrum, Narrow Spectrum, and CBD Isolate products. But what are their differences and why is it important as a consumer to know the differentiation? 

“Spectrum” refers to the amount of chemical compounds in CBD. CBD has many chemical compounds — terpenes, flavonoids, and cannabinoids. Once extracted, CBD can be further distilled to filter out some of these chemicals. Depending on this distillation process, the CBD oil will result in products with different chemical make-up which can be differentiated by consumers through the spectrum it falls into. So if you know which spectrum your CBD oil belongs to, you will know a lot more about what you’re putting into your body.


Full Spectrum CBD

Full Spectrum CBD is packed with a multitude of beneficial cannabis plant extracts including essential oils, terpenes and cannabinoids. As indicated in its name, the extraction process is designed so that a fuller spectrum of compounds in the plant is retained. Naturally, this means this category of products will contain trace amounts of the illegal, psychoactive substance Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

In the U.K., it is legal to have under 0.03% of THC in Full Spectrum CBD products, and under 0.02% of THC in the U.S. Although these levels are so low that it doesn’t have an actual psychoactive effect, products with any levels of THC are illegal in Hong Kong. So if you are thinking of purchasing a Full Spectrum product, we’d recommend to reconsider and try Broad-Spectrum instead. Read on to find out why.


Broad Spectrum CBD

Broad Spectrum CBD contains the same chemical compounds as Full Spectrum, except the THC is removed. However, when choosing a Broad Spectrum product, it’s important to be selective as it’s possible for THC to find its way in. We advise that checking the Certificate of Analysis (CoA) to be extra cautious or if you have a pending drug test.

Some CBD brands talk about the benefits of Broad Spectrum’s entourage effect, which refers to the heightened effect due to the interaction of THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids. However, as Broad Spectrum does not contain THC, this can be considered false advertising.


Narrow Spectrum

Narrow Spectrum CBD is a more filtered form of CBD compared to Broad Spectrum CBD. Advanced chromatography and distillation techniques are used to create a lighter flavour and “ultra-distilled” CBD oil. As Narrow Spectrum CBD oil further lowers the amount of other naturally occurring cannabis compounds that are found in Broad Spectrum CBD, and it does not have the natural earthy taste that Broad Spectrum CBD oil may have.


CBD Isolate

CBD isolate is an even more distilled form of CBD compared to Narrow Spectrum. Essentially, CBD Isolate is the purest form of CBD. It is a crystalline solid or powder that contains 99% pure CBD. This is because during the extraction process, the active compounds and all other phytocannabinoids are stripped away, leaving nothing else behind except CBD. This category of products are 100% free from THC and are the safest to consume. 


Choosing the right spectrum of CBD products 

Now that you know the differentiation between the different spectrum of CDB oil available, you can make an informed decision about which CBD product may be best for you. In Hong Kong where THC is not legal, Mellow only sources carefully-selected Broad Spectrum, Narrow Spectrum and CBD Isolate products so you can shop with a peace of mind.