Op-Ed by Cole Holstrom, Senior Technical Advisor
I see it all the time. Investors are understandably focused on the return on investment with their cannabis and hemp extraction equipment. I watch them think outside the box with all the possible methods, laser-focused on how they can make a quick buck.
Unfortunately, the cost of employee safety is often an overlooked part of the equation. In my experience, owners definitely need to think “inside the box” when it comes to safe extraction methods and ethanol safety concerns.
In my world of science and engineering, we commonly use the term “black box” to reference a device that is poorly understood, but just “works.” As in, “I don’t know how my microwave works… it’s a ‘Black Box,’ but it heats my pizza rolls and that’s all I care about.”
During my years as a Senior Technical Advisor, and field technician, I’ve spent a lot of time around extraktLAB’s Model 140. Despite it literally being a black box (aside from the new 2019 stainless steel model) there are some specific qualities about it that I really appreciate against the competition. Maybe I’m telling you something you already know, but give me a moment to wax poetic about these admirable aspects:
“Aaaaah but what of ethanol???” you say. Yes, ethanol is the darling extraction method of 2018, largely in part to paid advertorials in popular cannabis media outlets.
And that’s fine, but let me tell you something about the intense safety implications. Now granted, this is just anecdotal from a friend of mine, but so is just about everything in this industry:
In my hometown, they just broke ground for a bio-ethanol plant. It’s a big deal, lots of fanfare, 300 new jobs… all that good stuff. Now, my buddy is a firefighter for the local township. He’s told me what a nightmare it has been to prepare for this. Apparently, a pool of ethanol can burn with an invisible flame, and they have had to create specific protocols to train their staff on how to deal with this.
This ethanol refinery is a billion-dollar, understood industry. It’s an established thing. Given all the regulations I’ve already had to go through to certify a CO2 machine, just imagine the frustrating regulations one has to deal with when considering the volume of ethanol required to operate such a large facility.
For example, people often ask me, “what happens once the city finds out I need gallons upon gallons of ethanol on site?” I can confidently tell them that the city will be deeply invested in monitoring their business on a regular basis. Most people don’t want to deal with that kind of crackdown and intrusion. Not to mention, hassle.
When I explain to these folks how safe CO2 is and the benefits they’ll see from using this extraction method (ahem, 1% waste vs 20% waste with ethanol), they quickly understand the real power of this business model. And, how safe it is.
There’s no question in my mind that this Black Box just simply works. The extraktLAB Model 140 supercritical CO2 extractor offers a full solution and is scalable (sorry, ethanol). There might not be pizza rolls involved, but it’s all I care about.
Give us a call at 651-600-0036 or fill out the contact form below to learn more about our cutting-edge supercritical CO2 extractors.