What Exactly Are Botanical Extracts?
It is more likely that you have come in contact with botanical extracts in many of your consumer products. Botanical extracts have been a part of many consumer products for ages, both for internal and external use.
Beezy Beez Honey botanical extract products are a good example that uses extracts to provide many benefits for your skin while also fighting chronic complications.
Understanding Botanical Extracts
To understand the meaning of botanical extracts, let us first understand what botanicals are. Botanicals are ingredients sourced from different parts of plants, fruits, flowers, or trees, including the roots, seeds, stems, and leaves.
These ingredients are specifically sourced for their nutritional benefits, and since they are a hassle to be fully utilized, that is where botanical extracts come into play. These ingredients undergo various processes to extract their nutritional components that are easier to infuse into products.
Methods Of Extracting Botanical Extracts
Extraction is the process of removing one or several desired chemical compounds from their natural location to a separate physical location for further analysis. There are several methods through which botanical extracts are moved from botanicals, but we will focus on three: the supercritical fluid extraction method, butane extraction, and alcohol extraction.
Supercritical Fluid Extraction Method
This is the process that uses supercritical fluid to separate one component from a plant. It uses CO2, whose properties can be manipulated to best fit the requirements of the extraction process.
Due to its flexibility, CO2 can be great in extracting any substance in both its gaseous and liquid form, allowing for maximum output of the extracts. Also, this process is better as it will enable the reuse of CO2, making it environmentally friendly and efficient. A small amount of this gas can be sufficient for a large amount of botanical substance.
This extraction method is highly recommended in the food and beverage industry as the botanical extracts obtained from it are pure and free from microbial bacteria, which can be harmful to human health.
Butane (BHO) Extraction
This is a more efficient extraction method compared to the supercritical fluid extraction method in separating a substance from a compound. This process works by using a closed-loop system that is tight to avoid leaking gas. Liquid butane is run on the plant substance to be extracted at a lower temperature, giving a mixture of butane and the desired extract.
To get the pure substance, purging is done under regulated temperature conditions. This whole process is done in a closed-loop to reduce the chances of an explosion from fluctuating temperature levels.
This is the best method to extract soluble extracts such as essential oils at an affordable cost. It is the simplest of the three methods and the safest as it only requires temperatures equal to or below room temperature to get the best results.
To get the desired extracts, the plant’s substance is soaked in ethanol till submerged for 24 hours for the process to be complete. Afterward, the mixture is sieved to remove all the plant’s solid parts, and what remains is the extract mixed with ethanol.
This mixture is then put to evaporate the ethanol available and after the evaporation stage, what remains is the pure extract that is free from impurities.
Application Of Botanical Extracts
Although extracting this substance takes a lot of time and effort, its versatility is worth the hassle. The botanical extract has given birth to a multi-billion industry that is growing each day due to the inclination to produce natural products.
Here are several areas that use botanical extracts.
Many of the extracts can be used for medicinal purposes. Extracts from cannabis can be used to treat loss of appetite, mental health relief, and even migraines making it an important part of treatment.
The cosmetic industry is diverse, and extracts from many plants, flowers, to fruits are used to make skincare products. Botanical extracts are highly potent, providing a lasting therapeutic effect on the skin. They are also easily absorbed, allowing them to be taken up through the pores faster for effective results.
Food And Beverages
The use of botanical extracts has been on the rise, especially as different food products can be made to taste like a specific plant or flower, or fruit without necessarily changing the product itself. The extraction of oils from coconut, sunflower, and nuts also adds to the usefulness of these extracts.
Beverages have also taken up this process in ensuring they provide something different using the power of these extracts.
Botanical extracts are essential in our lives as they allow us to enjoy the nutritional benefits of plants, vegetables, and fruits. Their versatility allows them to be consumed in any way that seems fit for your needs.