It looks like weed, smells like weed, and pretty much gets you high like the bud your plug brings…or weed at a dispensary.
by Rowan Nathan · August 07, 2023
It looks like weed, smells like weed, and pretty much gets you high like the bud your plug brings…or weed at a dispensary. Enter the newest hemp derived cannabinoid product making waves. THCA flower is a newer player among hemp derived products, but rapidly gaining popularity as it delivers a versatile set of benefits and effects. THCA or tetrahydrocannabinolic acid is the raw form of THC. Unlike THC, THCA isn’t psychoactive, so it doesn’t get you high unless huge amounts are ingested. THCA is believed to offer numerous health benefits, such as anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects.
Here’s the kicker- once heated through combustion or decarboxylated, THCA converts to THC. So during the process of smoking, vaping, or cooking (heating) THCA becomes THC. And yes, this is the same THCA which is in most cannabis purchased at dispensaries. Cannabis and hemp both produce THCA. So as with Delta 9 gummies which are widely available online and gas stations throughout the South, the hemp/cannabis line continues to blur with colliding State and Federal laws on regulated cannabis and loosely regulated hemp.
Weed politics aside, what’s clear is that raw cannabis enthusiasts, and likely more than a few smokers looking to get high, are increasingly searching for THCA as a flower option. Based on data from dIgital marketing tool SEM Rush, google searches have increased six fold from two thousand in January to over twelve thousand in July. Google trends data shows similar growth. The growth trajectory is the same for high intent terms such as “THCA Flower near me” and “THCA flower online” which Google categorizes as transactional or commercial in nature.
In June, the trendy cannabis and merch brand Cookies, announced their entry into THCA flower market with a broad offering of THCA flower across dozens of popular strains including Apples and Bananas, Dosido, and Londoncello. The brand is currently in the midst of defending itself in multiple lawsuits, including a high profile fraud and genetics theft accusation from Seed Junky.
Selling THCA flower direct to customers from their website may position Berner and co for more potential conflict with their existing Cookies retail partners and state-licensed cultivators, which both will be competing with the THCA flower offering which is seemingly being sold on a different part of the same Cookies website.
The 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp and its derivatives, including THCA flower across much of the United States. Hemp flower is defined as containing less than 0.3% THC by dry weight. Some Individual states may have their own laws and restrictions so it’s best to look into local regulation on THCA flower to confirm there are no state level bans.
In practical terms, THCA flower is legal based on a similar Farm Bill interpretation that effectively legalized the sale of cannabis seeds online and across state lines based on seeds having a (delta-9) THC content below .3% of dry weight.
The process of transforming THCA into THC is called decarboxylation, and it can occur through heat or time. When cannabis is smoked or vaporized, heat instantly transforms THCA into THC, allowing for the immediate effects many consumers are looking for.
Decarboxylation can also occur over time. If a cannabis plant is left out in the sun for too long, its THCA molecules will slowly convert to THC, leading to a more potent and psychoactive experience. In addition to the sun, decarboxylation can occur naturally over time due to degradation from aging, over-curing or storage conditions.
THCA flower can be as potent as the exotic flower purchased at a dispensary or through weed delivery services. The higher the THCA percentage in the strain, the more THC will be converted as smoked. And there are very intoxicating THCA flower strains that can hold their own against dispensary weed testing in the 30% range. Individual factors such as tolerance and dosage can also affect the strength of THCA hemp flower just as the case with standard issue dispensary cannabis. As with any THC products or derivatives, it is recommended to start with a low dose, or one or two pulls, and gradually increase consumption to manage the experience and avoid unwanted effects.
If smoked, vaped or ingested after heating up, or once decarboxylated, THCA will show up as THC. So like other cannabinoids and THC derivatives if you’ve smoked or vaped THCA it will remain in your system for roughly 30 days. However, if eaten raw, you will not only pass your test, but likely be in great shape.
That being said, some drug tests may be sensitive enough to detect THCA in your system and flag a false positive, particularly with tests that use immunoassay screening, which are common in many workplaces and government agencies. Immunoassay-based tests are designed to detect a range of cannabinoids, including THC and its derivatives, but they can sometimes produce false positives for other compounds. It’s best to abstain from consuming THCA flower and other cannabinoid products if you know that you’ll be subjected to a drug test in the near future.
THCA flower is now one of the most readily available weed products in America. Searching for THCA flower near me will bring a bevy of results and several ways to get it. THCA is present in flower sold in Dispensaries near you. And if you live in a state with legal access to cannabis, in addition to dispensaries, there are likely services that will bring weed delivery to you, including choices of THCA flower. However if you’re in a State that does not have legal recreational weed, there are now options to get THCA hemp flower legally shipped by mail. With these multiple ways to buy THCA flower, THCA flower is always nearby. Perhaps more so than any other weed product to date.