Cannabis Sativa (hemp) is a naturally dioecious plant, meaning it has different sexes on individual plants although monoicous varieties do exist. Males grow taller and earlier in the season in anticipation of the females flowering.
Much of the controversy surrounding cannabis results from the presence of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) predominantly found within the female flowers. All EU certified industrial hemp cultivated in Jersey has a THC content below 0.3% and will therefore have no psychoactive effect if consumed. Using practices from the coffee and plant chemical purification industries, it is possible to extract and purify individual cannabinoids creating THC-free cannabinoid preparations.
Terpenes are volatile organic compounds produced by all plants and extracted for use in the cosmetic, fragrance, and flavouring industries. Terpenes are most commonly associated with plant essential oils and are the basic components of all plant aromatic compounds, from the sweet smell of jasmine to lemon, pepper, and pine. Terpenes have a wide variety of functions within the plant ranging from insect deterrence, encouraging pollination and plant-to-plant communication. Many major plant essential oils occur naturally within hemp flowers, helping to create its unique floral aroma.
Terpenes can be extracted using traditional methods used by the fragrance industry, such as steam distillation and enfleurage. Plant-based essential oils are widely used for aromatherapy and massage use, as well as in cosmetics and perfumes, creating distinct aromas.