Hemp & CBD Market Value: January 2020 Price Trends for Crude, Flower Biomass, Isolate
Home » Hemp & CBD Market Value: January 2020 Price Trends for Crude, Flower Biomass, Isolate
Are we producing too much Hemp and CBD?
The short answer is yes. According to financial media outlet, Benzinga America is growing exponentially more hemp than the market can feasibly process and consume. This is the number one reason why the cost of hemp has steadily declined in 2019 and has reached an all-time low as of January 2020.
While wholesale prices are dropping across nearly all hemp products–from raw biomass, to flower, to isolates, and distillates–not all hemp products are created equal. Moreover the current drop may ultimately level out as the market stabilizes. As a hemp supplier, processor or consumer, it’s important to understand all of the factors that make up hemp and CBD pricing trends so that you can plan for the future.
Here we dive into major factors like product type, moisture content, quality and volume with an extensive guide to today’s hemp and CBD market price trends.
In this post –
Price Trends by Hemp Product
CBD Biomass (raw)
Biomass refers to the whole hemp plant materials. The vast majority of the market utilizes biomass to produce CBD, which is derived from the leaves and stalks, aka “waste” after the plant’s flowers and seeds has been used — in a wide variety of products and supplements. Prices for biomass are generally dependent on the CBD content per pound, which is measured on a dry weight basis on a standard that requires it be at least 80% dry (according to Hemp Benchmarks ). When CBD biomass is not dry enough, it will result in a decreased wholesale price.
CBD Biomass Market Value
According to a Hemp Benchmarks report, up to 25K pounds of CBD Biomass sold for roughly $4.02 per %CBD per pound in June 2019. That price dropped significantly to $2.32 in October and is selling at $1.31 as of the latest report in January 2020, representing an 6 7% decrease overall.
Dried CBD Flower
Dried CBD flower refers to the bud and trichome portions of the hemp plant, which are removed from the stalks and stems. Dried flower is smokeable and sold alone or in pre-rolled joints. Dried CBD flower commands a higher price point than CBD biomass because it has been cut, trimmed and is ready to sell.
Dried CBD Flower Market Value
Croptober did not affect the price of CBD flower as dramatically as it did biomass. In June 2019, CBD flower sold for about $349 per pound wholesale. The price dropped to an average of $319 per pound in October followed by sharper decline as of the latest report in December. CBD flower is now selling at $226 per pound, representing a 35% dip in 6 months.
Crude Hemp Oil
Crude hemp oil is extracted from the hemp plant through one of several methods. The most common methods are pressurized CO2 or solvent extraction using ethanol or a hydrocarbon. Crude hemp oil contains all of the cannabinoids (including THC), terpenes and flavonoids found naturally in the plant. It’s often further purified ( winterized ) to remove organic plant compounds such as lipids, waxes and chlorophyll, which increases the product’s overall potency. But can break down some more fragile compounds like terpenes and flavonoids.
Crude Hemp Oil Market Value
Crude hemp oil has also experienced a sharp decline in value, dropping from $2,066 per kilo in June to $1,016 in October. By December, Hemp oil dropped to $668 per Kilo, representing a 68% decrease in value.
Refined Hemp Oil (distillates)
When crude hemp oil undergoes distillation to produce an even purer product, it becomes refined hemp with a much higher market value. Refined hemp further breaks down into three categories:
- CBD full spectrum oil , which contains all cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids.
- CBD broad spectrum oil , which has been fully or partially expunged of cannabinoids, plant materials, and terpenes.
- THC-free distillate, which is a broad spectrum oil that has also been expunged of all THC components using advanced techniques such as chromatography.
Refined Hemp Oil Market Value
Full spectrum CBD oils are the least refined and warrant the lowest market price at about $1,791 per kilo. THC-free CBD distillates on the other hand, warrant nearly double that price ($3,120) due in part to the expensive processing as well as the market demand. However, refined hemp oil overall has significantly declined from June, 2019 ($5,628) to January, 2020 ($2,528). As a whole, the three categories of refined hemp oil have dropped by 55%.
CBD isolates are the purest CBD products available to the market, produced by extracting all of plant components including, terpenes, flavonoids, and cannabinoids. CBD isolates come in granular or powder form and have no taste or fragrance. The final product contains 0% THC and is made up of 96%+ CBD.
CBD Isolates Market Value
Despite this seeming advantage, isolates are not as popular as refined oils. The average price of CBD isolate per kilo as of January 2020 is $1,624 which dropped from 66% at its price in June.
Industrial hemp seeds are used to produce a wide range of hemp biomass, usually for grain or fiber purposes. Grains are derived from hemp seeds and used for products like food and beauty oils. Fiber, which is derived from hemp stalks is used for products like papers and textiles. Industrial uses for hemp represents a much smaller portion (approximately 13%) of the market compared to CBD (approximately 77%), but demand exists and supply is low, which means the price per pound is much higher. Moreover as prices have been declining across most hemp products, industrial hemp seed prices are on the rise.
Industrial Seeds Market Value
The value of industrial seeds more than doubled from May to October 2019, according to Hemp Benchmarks. In October, hemp seeds were selling for $5.59 per pound. However, since October, the price has steadily declined to $4.57 per pound as of the January report.
Trends Based on THC Content, Volume and Quality
The USDA recently published its interim rules for hemp sale and cultivation, which determined that total THC content cannot exceed 0.3%. Moreover the rules define total THC to include THCA content as well through the following equation: (%THCA*.877) + %Delta9-THC.
This threshold is very easy to surpass, especially when plants grow to full maturation. Therefore cultivators whose crops test above the legal limit (known as hot crops) must seek remediation to remove the THC or else they must destroy the entire harvest. THC stripping services can cost about $1/input gram, thereby driving down overall profits.
Like most commodities, volume is a major factor in determining overall market price. According to Hemp Benchmarks’ January, 2020 report, the price of CBD biomass when purchasing up to 25K pounds is about $1.31 per % CBD per pound. By contrast when volume increases to 100K pounds, 1M pounds, or 1M+ pounds the price subsequently drops to $1.14, $1.01, and $0.55 respectively.
Extraction methods generally fall into the categories of CO2 or liquid solvent extraction (using ethanol or hydrocarbons).
In order to process hemp using CO2 , it must first be pressurized in metal tanks to transform from a gas into a supercritical fluid. From there, the CO2 solution draws the desired components from the plant such as cannabinoids, terpenes or flavonoids. The CO2 solution is later evaporated leaving a concentrated oil, shatter or budder behind.
Liquid solvent extraction uses solutions such as butane, propane or ethanol to collect the components from the raw CBD biomass. After extraction, these solutions are purged of the solvents, leaving behind the extracted hemp material.
Extraction Method Pricing
Carbon dioxide extraction is the safest method because it doesn’t leave behind any toxic solvents that could contaminate the final product. It’s also the slowest and most expensive extraction method, due to the steep cost of the technology. For instance a 5-liter CO2 extraction machine can cost about $100,000. By comparison, a hydrocarbon machine costs about $20,000. This higher operating cost may warrant a higher wholesale price if the market understands its value, but extraction method does not necessarily have a 1:1 relationship with wholesale price.
Machine vs Hand Harvesting
Machine harvesting uses industrial devices to cut, collect and transport mature hemp biomass. While this requires a large initial investment in machinery, it is generally more efficient and cost effective in the long term. Especially when harvesting hemp for industrial purposes, specialized machines can cut a swath about 40 feet wide through a field. This type of machinery is optimal when harvesting on a wide scale, but they can easily shatter seeds and compromise overall quality. Despite the fact that machine harvesting works rapidly, it may not be the best method when harvesting hemp for its delicate flower heads.
In these cases, hand harvesting may produce a higher quality yield because the process is more precise. Higher quality seeds and buds may also translate to higher profits. But in order to ensure the return is worth the investment, hemp cultivators must hire the right amount of labor, which can be costly. For example, if there are not enough people to hand cut the harvest in time, crops may over-mature and overproduce THC, rendering them illegal and potentially worthless.
Fast Dry vs Slow Curing
Once hemp is harvested, growers must immediately transport the plants to a drying facility to remove the majority of moisture content. On strategy is slow curing, which requires growers to utilize a facility that is between 60 and 70°F with humidity levels between 45 – 55%. This process helps preserve volatile terpenes, which can degrade at higher temperatures. It also provides an environment whereby freshly harvested hemp can continue increasing in cannabinoid potency. While this method certainly produces a higher quality product that could warrant more money due to a higher CBD concentration, it may also end up producing more than the legal limit of THC.
Heated dryers and continuous air flow dryers can be used to cure hemp quickly. While efficient, they can also compromise the seed and plant through overheating or cracking of the seeds. Additionally, during the aeration process the roof will be cold and could develop condensation without proper ventilation. That condensation can drip into the hemp bins and form mold buildup around and on the plants.
While the curing process itself does not directly dictate the price of hemp biomass or flower, the resulting quality of the product will. For example, slow curing may produce a higher concentration of CBD which will warrant a higher wholesale price, but if THC rises above the legal limit, the product is not sellable. Similarly, fast drying will improve output and ensure that the crop does not continue increasing in THC potency, but cracked seeds, contamination, and lower CBD content will all drive down pricing.
By Cannabinoid Level
When harvesting hemp for smokable flower, oils or isolates, cannabinoid levels matter. For example, CBD biomass pricing is directly dependent on the percentage of CBD per pound. With regards to distillates, THC content directly affects the wholesale price. As mentioned above, when hemp oil is 100% stripped of THC, it sells for nearly double the price of full spectrum oil.
Aside from CBD and THC, lesser known cannabinoids like CBG (will link to the blog) or CBN are making the biggest difference in price. According to Hemp Benchmarks the price of CBG biomass varies, but generally sells for around $22.42 per % CBG per pound (wholesale), equating to roughly $175 to $325/pound overall.
Regardless of product type or processing method, market flooding is the biggest factor behind today’s trends in hemp and CBD pricing. Today, cultivators can forecast 1,000 plants per acre and roughly 0.5 – 1 lb per plant. That equates to 500 – 1,000 lbs per acre, which can be doubled when planting earlier in the season. This may have sounded great in theory, but the reality of today’s oversupply of hemp means approximately 60% of growers cannot find buyers.
Today’s wholesale trends looks bleak but it does not mean doom and gloom for the future. According to trading platform, PanXchange , this type of volatility and oversupply is normal in emerging markets and will ultimately correct itself. After all, the U.S. hemp market is projected to grow to $2.6 billion in sales by 2022 with plenty of profits to go around.
For farmers, key strategies may be to grow a little less than capacity, set up contracts in advance, and safely store hemp that cannot be immediately sold. It may also mean changing strategies for growing, harvesting, drying and extracting to ensure that the end product warrants the highest prices. The hemp industry has an incredible trajectory and it’s vital to stay focused on producing the best quality product available.
At ACS Laboratory, we stay current with market trends and legal compliance so that we can better serve our customers. Contact us today to schedule a test or ask a question about your hemp harvest.
ACS Laboratory in Tampa, FL – Hemp & CBD Market Value: January 2020 Price Trends for Crude, Flower Biomass, Isolate Hemp and CBD price drops as a result of Croptober.
CBD Hemp Price Per Pound & CBD Oil Prices Across the States
When we look at the CBD
CBD is the abbreviation for Cannabidiol. It is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis and after THC, it is the second most common cannabinoid in the cannabis plant. Due to its potential medical benefits, including analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anticonvulsant and anti-anxiety effects, as well as helping with neurological and gastrointestinal diseases, CBD has today exploded in popularity.
In recent years it is increasingly used in products, such as tinctures and oils, as an accessible means of reaping these benefits and imparting a feeling of relaxation and calm. If you are using CBD, it is a good idea to do some research to inform you of your dosage.
Therefore, the legality of CBD in each state varies depending on whether it comes from industrial hemp or cannabis seeds, flowers or plants.
Hemp is also called industrial hemp in varieties of cannabis Sativa that contain stumpy THC concentrations.
Hemp is grown for its seeds or fibers and used in skin products, clothing, and food supplements. The seeds containing around 30 percent oil are edible and a good source of magnesium, fiber, protein, potassium, and vitamin E.
Consuming hemp seeds can lower blood pressure and the risk of heart disease. Whereas, hemp seed oil can be used to make edible oils, varnishes, paints, and soaps.
Price Trends by Product Type
CBD Biomass (Raw)
This type applies to the product that includes plant material. This is what most producers use to create CBD. It is taken from the leaves and stems after the hemp plant’s Buds
Buds refers to the actual flower of the marijuana plant that is harvested by cannabis growers to use for medicinal and recreational purposes due to its high concentration of cannabinoids within the plant. These are generally the dried flowers and act as a key part of the female cannabis plant. It is also referred to as the “old fashioned” way of smoking cannabis seeds, flowers or tobacco. Buds can be sticky or brittle, but the highest quality of buds is rich in trichomes, aroma, and color.
“With its appearance and smell, I can tell these buds are high-quality”
CBD Flower (Dried)
This product includes the Bud
Bud is the part of the cannabis plant that is used by cannabis investors for its psychoactive properties. It’s often grown and distributed in small fragrant clumps further this actual flower is curved, harvested, and used for both medicinal and recreational purposes as they contain a high concentration of active cannabinoids such as CBD, CBG, and THC. It is similar to nug and can also be used for smoking, infused with foods, or extracted for cannabis concentrates if they are well-trimmed and dry enough.
“Oh, that’s some sweet bud! It smells like hay”
Technically, trichomes are “fine outgrowths or appendages on plants, algae, lichens, and certain protists.”
On a cannabis plant, Trichomes are the part of the plant that produces cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids. These control potency and flavor, among other things.
Trichomes are also a defense mechanism as they have a sour flavor and a strong smell that protects the plant against most insects or animals. They even protect the plant from fungal growth and strong winds.
The flowers often refer to the attractive part of the cannabis plant which can be a bud, grass, green, moist, flower, and so on. Although cannabis flowers do not have traditional petals, they are still the reproductive organ of female plants. The flowers are the most appreciated and consumed part of the plant due to its versatility, and offer many methods of consumption, such as smoking with a pipe or bong, or rolling it in a joint or blunt.
Cannabis flowers are sticky, crystal-covered, and hairy pieces that are harvested and dried for use as medicine. When male cannabis plants fertilize them, further these flowers generate cannabis seeds. Otherwise, they will continue to produce sticky flammable organic substances that hold active cannabinoids until they are yielded properly by cannabis growers.
“I prefer smoking flowers as they produce a high amount of THC.”
Crude Hemp Oil
See Cannabis Oil or CBD Oil
The hemp oil is taken from the plant through various methods. Some use pressurized C02 or other solvent extraction that utilizes ethanol or hydrocarbon. It has all of the Cannabinoids
Cannabinoids are the natural and chemically unique compounds found in cannabis seeds, flowers or plants that act on the brain’s cannabinoid receptors in the cells of the human body, and offer a variety of benefits for health, including pain relief and others.
There are over 110 known varieties of cannabinoids like CBG, THCv, CBN, and others, but tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and CBD are well-known because they are the most abundant and have euphoric and psychoactive effects on your body that motivate the recreational use of the marijuana plant. Often, to get more potent effects, cannabis products can be enhanced with CBD.
If you are looking to use marijuana as another form of medication, choose a strain with high levels of CBD as it is also used to treat Dravet syndrome.
“According to research, cannabis plants produce between 80 – 100 cannabinoids”
Terpenes are the unrefined compounds that provide the taste and smell in each cultivar of cannabis and a variety of other organisms. They are created by plants to defend against various insects, herbivores, animals, and other environmental hazards from harming.
Terpenes are responsible for the regeneration and oxygenation of a plant. Plus, it serves as potential immunity boosters in the human body and appears to provide immune defenses both to people who consume these sweet-smelling compounds and to the plants that make them.
Terpenes molecules work hard to give your appetite full of the flavor of herbs, tropical, citrus, diesel, coffee, wood, pine, skunk, and spices.
THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol, the most common cannabinoid available. THC is one of the only cannabinoids to contain this psychoactive component, and therefore strains high in this compound have been cultivated by growers. THC-rich strains include Durban Poison, Bio-Diesel, Trainwreck, and OG Kush.
THC can be used both medicinally and recreationally. Among various benefits, it can also be a part of edibles, syrups, oils used via drops, tinctures, medications, and topicals for anti-inflammation.
THC is used on pets to relieve pain and calm anxiety. Marinol, a synthetic THC drug, is the only THC drug currently approved by the FDA.
Distillates (Refined Hemp Oil)
Distillates are produced when crude hemp oil is distilled to make a much purer product. It is refined and has increased value in the market (learn more about prices and where to buy CBD Oil in Australia). There are three categories of distillates:
- CBD full spectrum oil has all cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.
- CBD broad spectrum oil has only partial or no cannabinoids, plant material, and terpenes.
- THC distillate with no THC is a broad spectrum oil that has removed all THC through advanced processes like chromatography.
The market value for distillates varies by type. Full-spectrum has the lowest price and THC-free distillates get nearly double what full spectrum does. As with other products, a decline has happened recently with the current price for full-spectrum being $2,528. All three categories have lost almost 55% of their mid-2019 worth.
These isolates are the purest CBD products on the market. They are made by taking all of the plant parts including terpenes, flavonoids, and cannabinoids and can be made in granular or powder form. They don’t have any taste or smell and have 0% THC with over 96% CBD content. Oddly, these isolates aren’t as desired when compared to refined oils. The cost for CBD isolate is currently $1,624 showing a drop of 66% since mid-2019.
Industrial hemp seeds are utilized to make various hemp biomass. Grains are used for food and products in the beauty industry and fiber from stalks are used for paper and fabrics. Interestingly, industrial hemp is only a small portion of the CBD market but demand is present and supply is reduced. While many hemp products have dropped in value, industrial hemp seeds have gone up, with the exception of the beginning of 2020. They doubled in price between May and October 2019 at $5.59/pound and dropped to $4.47 per pound. That said, they have held their ground more than other hemp products.
No matter what type of hemp product you are dealing with, cannabinoid levels are important. A good example of this is when you are pricing biomass. The cost depends on the percentage of CBD per pound. Distillate prices are affected as well. THC content affects the wholesale price. If hemp oil is completely stripped of THC, it garners almost double the price of what full-spectrum oil gets. The other cannabinoids, such as CBG and CBN, also affect the price. CBG biomass sells from $175 to $325 per pound.
Supply and Demand
No matter what CBD hemp product you are producing or buying, if there is too much on the market, pricing goes lower. Current oversupply means that almost 60% of hemp growers cannot find a place to sell their product. Too much product means a lower CBD hemp price per pound for everyone.
While CBD hemp price per pound is trending downward at the moment in the States, that does not mean it is going to stay there. It’s a new market and is somewhat volatile as businesses go through a learning process. It will correct itself sooner rather than later and the market will grow and stabilize. Growers will have to adjust their crop levels, get contracts in place, and find ways to store hemp that can’t be immediately sold. Everyone in the market, be it hemp or weed, has to adjust and strategize. Prices always vary by product and state by state but quality products and proper projection of supply and demand makes the CBD hemp market profitable for everyone.
Learn all abot the CBD hemp price per pound. What is the current state of the the market and what trends might be expected.