Hash is one of those weird words you hear floating around in the cannabis industry, similar to live resin, kratom, kief, and others. You’re probably more familiar with the words “extract” and “dab”, words that refer to a sticky concentrated form of cannabis. In this article, we’ll be breaking down exactly what “hash” is, how it compares to weed, its origin, and much more. If this is a brand new topic for you, you might get overwhelmed with all the fresh information. We’ll try to make this article as informal and easy to understand as possible, but feel free to take a break and come back later if you start to feel like you need some fresh air.
Hash: What Is It?
The word hash is actually a shortening of the word “hashish”, similar to how CBD is an abbreviation of cannabidiol. Hash is an extract of cannabis and typically comes in a brown or dark green brick or ball. It is made from the resinous glands (called trichomes) that are found on the surface of the cannabis leaves. The trichomes are removed from the plant lining and are concentrated to offer maximum potency. One fascinating fact about hash is that it does not require solvents or chemicals to remove from the plant. Rather, it is extracted via physical manipulation and changes in temperature. There are several types of hash and each one is crafted uniquely with perfected methods that date back for centuries.
The Origin of Hash
Hash has been used for centuries; historians place the origin of hash back to 900 AD. Interestingly enough, there is written documentation that suggests earlier forms of hash (charas - resin that collected on cannabis farmer’s hands) were already being used. In Arabic, “hashish” roughly translates to “grass,” a humorous translation since one of marijuana’s slang terms is also “grass.” The country Morocco is credited with creating the world’s first psychoactive edible called mahjoun, a doughy delicacy rolled in hash.
The expansion of hash’s popularity is due to France during the terror of Napoleon’s reign. In 1978. French soldiers returning from Egypt transported hash to their homes, where it enjoyed great popularity especially in the Western world throughout the 19th century. European doctors began to conduct research on hash, utilizing a plethora of extraction methods that brought forth the invention of cannabis-infused medication and tinctures.
The beginning of the 20th century saw cannabis extractions readily available in both US and European drug stores. The rampant use of cannabis (thanks to hash) prompted the US government to prohibit all things cannabis, hash included. The once-prominent hashish was now considered an illicit substance and was completely outlawed in the United States.
The Re-Emergence of Hash
The 1960s, often called the countercultural decade, heralded the civil rights movement, political assassinations, the Vietnam war, and inevitably, antiwar protests. This decade of rebellion also welcomes the enthusiastic usage of cannabis and subsequently, hash. Hash-exporting countries like Afghanistan, Morocco, and Nepal saw a huge demand for the drug throughout various Western countries. As such, the traditional form of hard-pressed bricks (formed by pressure and heat) was no longer viable; the cannabis concentrate needed to evolve. In the late 1980s, a new method of extraction called gland separation was discovered. A machine known as the “master sifter” implemented vibrations to effectively separate the glands (trichomes) from the plant.
Other researchers like Reinhard C. Delp used water extraction methods to quicken the separation, a crude method that has been perfected in current times to create “bubble/ice water hash.” Delp’s methods, introduced in 1997, were then patented, adapted, and modified via Mila Jensen. Jensen’s method of using pollinator isolation bags was perfected by Marcus “Bubbleman” Richardson. This Canadian hash enthusiast secured permission to lease and use the methods from a patent (originally from 1999) via his BubbleBags company, one of the very few companies permitted to distribute worldwide.
How Hash Differs From Weed & Other Concentrates
General conversions about cannabis, whether that be hemp or weed, refer to either the buds or the flower. We mentioned in the beginning how hash is a cannabis extract from the cannabis plant’s resinous glands called trichomes. Hash has a variety of extraction methods (dry sift/sieve, bubble/ice water), all of which will contain higher concentrations of THC than traditional flowers or buds. Hash concentrates will range from 40-80% potency while flower ranges from 15-25%.
The flower and buds of marijuana are traditionally rolled into joints, smoked in pipes or bongs, or ground up to be used in specialized herbalizers. Hash, on the other hand, is a concentrate and is designed to be rolled into tobacco, mixed with the crushed flower or buds, or used with a dabbing device.
Lastly, hash differs from other concentrates in that it is fairly simple to make with minimal supplies. Other concentrates must be extracted using costly equipment and should only be performed by experienced, legal, and licensed professionals. Any attempts to make any extractions or solvents of cannabis can result in contamination or interaction with harmful chemicals. The majority of cannabis concentrates are fairly infantile in their existence, whereas hash (also a cannabis concentrate) has existed for millennium. A general rule to follow is that when in doubt, contact a professional.
Hashish or “hash” may not be something you’ve ever heard of before. Even if you have, you may not have been familiar with its uniqueness and prominence in the cannabis industry. The use of hash has been popular for thousands of years, its use only being hindered by those who did not approve of its use. Hash has been a staple of the middle East and has furthered the research of medications, cannabis products, and countless others. Without hash, the very first edible may have taken much longer to be invented! While it differs from other cannabis concentrates, it is relatively easy to make, requires no solvents or expensive extraction, and is considerably more potent than traditional marijuana flowers or buds. It is unfortunately illegal in the United States, but quite prominent in other parts of the world. Should you have a chance to visit Morocco, we encourage you to sample some authentic mahjoun and let us know what you think!
Here at TwoHawk Extracts, we carry a broad selection of hemp-derived cannabinoids available in a wide variety of products. Delta-8 THC, Farm Bill Compliant Delta-9 THC, HHC, and THC-O are readily available in gummies, softgels, tinctures, disposable vapes and vape cartridges. All of our products have been subjected to rigorous testing by third-party independent labs to ensure purity and potency. You can view the results of these tests by scanning the QR code printed on each product’s packaging or by clicking the embedded link in each of our product’s descriptions. Should you have any questions regarding anything in this article or are curious to learn more about the hemp-derived cannabinoids we carry, feel free to reach out to us. Our team of experts would be more than happy to help you understand anything and everything about the cannabis industry. Join us in our next article where we’ll be exploring the different classifications of cannabis. Is it a depressant, stimulant, or hallucinogen? Find out in our next article; we hope to see you there!