There are a variety of cannabis concentrates on the market, each with its devotees, but a perennial favorite of cannabis consumers is live resin.

What is Live Resin?

Traditionally, cannabis flowers are dried and processed into smokable products but live resin is different—it's made from fresh and flash frozen cannabis flowers. While drying buds may contribute to terpene degradation, flash freezing freshly harvested buds maintains the terpene count. Terpenes are responsible for the smell and taste of cannabis (and a variety of other plants as well). They’re what gives each cultivar—also known as a strain—its unique flavor profile. From citrus to pine and even the famous skunk odor, the cannabis plant is full of terpenes lending their flavor and their scent.

How Live Resin Is Made?

First, cannabis flowers and other plant material are harvested and quickly frozen—either by being passed through liquid nitrogen or packed with dry ice. The cannabis material is then put into an extractor. This machine puts butane under pressure to cool it and then lets the cooled solvent run through the plant material, taking all of the plant's cannabinoids, including terpenes, with it. The extractor takes this mixed material and slightly heats it in a vacuum to burn off the butane while leaving the cannabinoids undamaged. The result is a gooey product with a consistency somewhere between honey and cake frosting.

It’s important to note that this is a highly specialised process that should be left to professionals in the lab. Also, the final product undergoes stringent tests to ensure all of the solvent has been removed before it reaches the consumer.

Live Resin Vs. Cannabis Wax

Both live resin and cannabis wax are cannabis extracts made in a similar fashion—using butane in an extractor—and both are smoked. While the process of making live resin preserves the fullest range of cannabinoids, wax is highly concentrated THC with residual cannabinoids. Live has a higher terpene content, resulting in a more flavorful smoke while wax has a higher THC content, some with over 90 percent THC.

What are Live Resin Carts?

Put simply, a live resin cart is a refilled tube of liquid live resin to be used with a vape pen. They are an easy, straightforward way to consume live resin, as opposed to dabbing which requires a larger smoking device.

Live Resin Cart Pricing Guide

Given the specialized equipment and the intensiveness of the process to produce live resin, it is often more expensive than other kinds of cannabis products, especially those derived from dried buds. As with many products there are regional differences in price due to availability and demand. The price of a live resin cart also varies with factors such as brand and cultivar so giving an exact price is tricky. Generally speaking, the price of a 0.5 gram cartridge ranges from $25-$60.

The Bottom Line: Live Resin

Live Resin is a specialty product made with freshly harvested and frozen cannabis flowers. The process of making it allows the final product to retain more terpenes, resulting in a richly flavored smoke and a high THC content.

Live Resin is a specialty product made with freshly harvested and frozen cannabis flowers.