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July 29, 2019 2 min read

TERPENES: Aromatic Oils That Give Plants Their Distinct Smells


Recent research has led to some amazing breakthroughs in the CBD industry. Researchers discovered there are numerous compounds found in hemp and cannabis plants that work togethersynergystically and appear to have effects on a number of ailments facing millions of people.


The ‘Entourage Effect’

Plants have many compounds that work together as a cohesive & symbiotic unit. Current research suggests the compounds found in hemp and cannabis shows incredible potential to be effective for many conditions plaguing humanity.

One of these compounds is calledterpenes.


What are terpenes and what do they do?

Terpenes are aromatic oils produced by plants to help protect them from things like mold, bacteria, fungus, and pests and they also attract pollinating insects.

These aromatic oils produce pungent and distinctive flavors and smells like citrus, berry, mint, and pine and they play a role in regulating the effects of the many varieties of plant strains.

More than 100 terpenes have been found in cannabis and hemp plants, but they are not limited to cannabis and hemp alone.

In fact, scientists estimate there are more than 20,000 across the plant kingdom.

Each terpene produces its own unique effects - some help you focus, some help you sleep, and others promote stress relief.

You may be familiar with terpenes from their use in essential oils and aromatherapy.


Terpenes are found in many plants:

  • Alpha-Bisabolol (chamomile)
  • Alpha-Phellandrene (eucalyptus)
  • Alpha-Pinene (coniferous trees like pines)
  • Βeta-caryophyllene (basil, papaya & walnuts)
  • Beta-Pinene (ginger, nutmeg, pine trees, rosemary, sage)
  • Camphor (camphor basil, camphor trees, kaput trees, rosemary)
  • Citral (found in citrus such as lemon, lime and orange)
  • Citronellol (citronella, geraniums, roses)
  • Eucalyptol (eucalyptus)
  • Eugenol (cloves)
  • Gamma-terpinene (abundant in fruits like citrus)
  • Geraniol (citronella, geraniums, lemongrass, roses)
  • Humulene (basil, ginseng, sage)
  • Limonene (found in the skins of lemons, limes, and oranges)
  • Linalool (herbs, flowers, lavender, mints, and spices)
  • Myrcene (hops, parsley)
  • Ocimine (basil, kumquats, pepper)
  • Para-Cymene (cumin, thyme)
  • Terpineol (pine and tea trees)
  • Terpinolene (apples, cumin, lilacs)
  • Valencene (valencia oranges and many other citrus fruits)


How & why companies use terpenes

Because of their therapeutic properties, terpenes are widely used in cosmetics, food and medicine.

Many companies use ethanol to extract CBD from the plant and when ethanol is removed, terpenes are lost through evaporation.

Thanks to recent advances in technology companies are able to reintroduce terpenes into their final products, providing the ability to fine tune CBD products that create predictable and dependable results.


Now that CBD is legal, demand for terpenes is skyrocketing.

The biggest change in the American cannabis industry came with the federal legalization of hemp passing with the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018.

The bill effectively made it legal to produce hemp-derived products such as CBD and as a result more in depth research is currently underway and the future looks promising.

To learn more about CBD click here.