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Shatter, sugar, crumble, badder — are these even names for cannabis products?

Concentrates are nothing new in the long history of cannabis, but new iterations and innovations in this product category routinely arrive on dispensary shelves. Navigate our vast selection with confidence using this thorough concentrates guide.

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What are concentrates?

Concentrates are cannabis products that include heightened levels of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or other cannabinoids compared to cannabis flower. Concentrates can contain upwards of 85% or higher THC, while flower typically contains anywhere from 15% to 30% THC, or slightly more.

Concentrates include products like kief and hash, which can be made by mechanically separating cannabinoid and terpene-rich trichomes from the flower. They also include extracts, which are made using techniques that employ solvents like hydrocarbons, ethanol, and CO2 to pull cannabinoids and terpenes out of the plant.

Want to learn more about the manufacturing process? Check out our guide on how concentrates are made.

10 types of concentrates you’ll find on an NYC dispensary menu

Save this cheat sheet and refer back to it when going through our menu. You’ll thank us later.

Budder

This concentrate is typically made using hydrocarbon extraction, which involves the use of butane, propane, or some other type of hydrocarbon solvent to produce highly potent cannabis oil. That crude oil is then purged and whipped to create a creamy, fluffy extract that can be dabbed or vaped. Budder is typically a blonde or amber color following this post-processing and typically ranges from 80% to 90% THC content.

Crumble

Crumble is also typically made using hydrocarbon extraction, except it dries out and turns into a flaky, crumbly consistency. Expect an amber or golden color and upwards of 90% THC content when considering crumble.

Diamonds

Cannabis diamonds are virtually pure THCA crystals that form during the extraction process, often while producing sauce. These diamonds form during the purging process, when residual solvent that captured pure THCA evaporates, leaving behind these crystalline concentrates. THCA diamonds are 99.9% pure and are often clear or a pale yellow or amber color.

Hash

Hash is one of the first cannabis concentrates, its use dating back to ancient civilizations. Hash is produced by mechanically separating trichomes from cannabis flower and applying heat and pressure to compress them into a brick. Bricks of hash can be smoked or vaporized directly, or small slices of a brick can be added to cannabis flower to boost the potency.

Kief

The powdery material that collects in the bottom of your grinder is known as kief, and it contains the trichomes that fell from flower as it was ground and jostled around. As a result, kief is more potent than regular cannabis flower, and it’s also one of the easiest concentrates to make yourself. Simply use a grinder with a kief catcher and it will collect automatically. You could sprinkle kief on top of cannabis flower to boost the potency of your next hit, or you could use it to make hash.

Live Resin

Live resin is a “live” extract, which means it’s made with fresh frozen cannabis flower. When cannabis flower is frozen immediately after harvest, it retains more cannabinoids and terpenes, which results in a more flavorful cannabis oil closely reminiscent of its parent strain (cultivar). This extract can then be turned into other types of concentrates.

Live resin is a favorite among cannabis connoisseurs who want the full experience of a cultivar in concentrate form. That’s why you’ll see live resin products advertised by strain name, such as MFNY’s Super Runtz Live Resin Badder, which is live resin extract from the Super Runtz strain then refined to the consistency and texture of badder.

Oil

Cannabis oil is a thick, syrupy liquid resulting from extraction. The most famous is probably Butane Hash Oil (BHO), a variety of cannabis oil produced by hydrocarbon extraction. Oil tends to be a broad- or full-spectrum cannabis product, meaning it contains most or all of the terpenes and cannabinoids found in the source plant. Expect around 90% THC content from cannabis oil.

Importantly, oil and tinctures are not the same product. Tinctures are cannabis extract suspended in a carrier oil and they have an oil consistency. These products should not be vaped, but instead taken orally..

Rosin

Rosin is a unique type of concentrate that’s produced by placing bubble hash, a concentrate made using ice water extraction, into a device known as a rosin press. The rosin press applies heat and pressure to the bubble hash to squeeze out a thick, viscous oil, which is typically amber or dark brown in color. Rosin is known for containing a significant amount of terpenes, as well as anywhere from 60% to 90% THC content.

Sauce

Sauce is a high-terpene full-spectrum extract (HTFSE) that can be made by way of any solvent extraction method. The goal when producing sauce is generally to create nearly pure cannabinoid diamonds, which leaves behind a terpene-rich, sticky liquid extract that appeals to consumers who love the flavors and aromas of cannabis. Expect lower potency levels around 60% THC content with sauce, since much of the cannabinoid content has been crystallized and, often, been removed.

Shatter

Shatter is an extract made by pouring cannabis oil over a sheet and allowing it to solidify in a thin layer. The result is a glass-like consistency that can be broken down into small, golden, or amber-colored shards for dabbing or vaporizing. Shatter is highly potent, often exceeding 90% THC content.

There are, of course, many other types of concentrates out there, such as distillate, an oil that is a virtually pure, isolated cannabinoid, and bubble hash, a type of hash produced using ice water extraction. We’ve covered some of the most common ones you’ll encounter above, but if you see a name you don’t recognize, feel free to ask one of The Travel Agency’s budtenders — we’ll be happy to explain what you can expect from any product we carry.

What about vapes — are those concentrates?

Vapes always contain concentrates, but the type of concentrate can vary. You’ll find disposable, 510-thread, pods that contain distillate, live resin, sauce, and other types of extracts. Check the label on the product’s package or read the menu description to confirm the type of concentrate that’s in your vape.

In the market for a vape? Read our guide to spotting fake vape carts, and learn why it’s so important to buy legal, tested vapes from a licensed dispensary.

Where to buy concentrates

Put quality and safety at the top of your list when shopping for concentrates. Many extracts are produced with complex, meticulous processes, and they must be properly purged to remove residual solvents for the best experience.

When you shop with a licensed cannabis dispensary, you can rest assured that your concentrates are handled with the utmost care throughout the entire supply chain. This is because licensed cannabis dispensaries can only carry products that have passed state-mandated cannabis testing standards to ensure they are of quality. You can review these test results for yourself too; just take a look at the packaging of your product for a QR code or link to the third-party laboratory test results.

When you buy concentrates from an unlicensed retailer, you’re risking buying untested and contaminated products. Consuming concentrates that contain residual solvents or other contaminants could be harmful to your health.

Learn more about how The Travel Agency selects cannabis products and scrutinizes their quality before adding them to the menu.

How to consume concentrates

There are several ways you can consume concentrates, some of which are simple and others which involve some equipment and knowledge of basic techniques. Here’s a look at the most common ways to consume your cannabis concentrates.

Use a dab rig: The conventional way to consume extracts like budder, crumble, and shatter is to use a type of pipe called a dab rig. Dab rigs are affixed with a “nail,” which you heat with a blowtorch or electronically (called an e-nail) before adding a small amount of extract on top of it. Inhale instantly.

Use portable vaporizers: The addition of concentrate-compatible portable vaporizers and dab pens have made for an even easier dabbing experience. These portable vaporizers skip the blowtorch or e-nail in favor of a rechargeable battery, simplifying consumption. Some dry herb vaporizers are dual-use, which means you can vape concentrates with them as well as flower.

Combine with flower: Some concentrates, like kief, hash, or crumble, can easily be added to flower. Sprinkle it in a joint or add it to your bowl pack to up the level of potency during your next session. More viscous concentrates can be brushed onto or twirled around the outside of a joint as well.

Not all concentrates are the right fit for every device. Some are too thick to easily scoop into a chamber, while others are too runny and could spill out of your accessory and damage it. Read the instruction manual that comes with your device for further insight.

There are some more advanced ways to use concentrates too, such as adding them to a recipe for making your own infused edibles. However, this involves some additional steps beyond simply buying your product from the dispensary. If you’re interested in skipping these steps, check out the edibles at The Travel Agency.

How to store concentrates

The way you store cannabis concentrates can impact their shelf life and how long you can preserve their potency and flavor. Store your concentrate in an airtight container, as oxygen can degrade cannabinoids and terpenes. You should also avoid exposure to light, as UV rays degrade cannabis compounds as well, so keep the container in a dark or low-light area. Finally, make sure your concentrate is kept in a cool, dry environment too, as heat and humidity can reduce quality and encourage contamination.

Cannabis concentrate FAQs

What is the best form of cannabis concentrate?

The best cannabis concentrate is the one that checks all the boxes that are most important for you. If you want a potent, easy-to-handle extract that you can dab or vape without a mess, then Shatter might be the best choice for you. If you prefer a more flavorful experience, consider sauce or live resin. And if you just want something quick and easy, a vape cartridge of cannabis oil might be for you.

What concentrate gets you the highest?

Concentrates are generally very potent when it comes to THC content. The most potent of these are dabs, which include extracts like budder, crumble, and shatter.

Of course, there’s more to how cannabis makes you feel than just THC percentage. Some concentrates with lower THC content may hit you harder depending on the compounds present and how they affect you, so don’t be hesitant to try different types.

What’s the difference between dabs and concentrates?

Dabs refer to extracts like waxes and oils that are conventionally used with a dab rig. These extracts can also be used with an electronic dab pen. Concentrates is a broader category that includes dabs but also non-extracts like kief or hash.

Are concentrates stronger than bud?

Concentrates are more potent than flower, containing densely packed volumes of cannabinoids and terpenes. This concentration of compounds is how these cannabis products get their name.

Is it better to smoke flower or concentrate?

Whether smoking flower or concentrates is better is a matter of preference, so try both out to see which you like most. You could also combine some concentrates with flower for an added kick to your next sesh.

Shop concentrates in New York City

With convenient locations in Union Square and Downtown Brooklyn, The Travel Agency is ready with a full menu of concentrates of all types. Dive into our menu, find your favorite, and get ready for a thrilling ride.

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