Live resin sauce, also known as terp sauce or just “sauce,” is a new popular form of cannabis concentrate. Live resin has been rising in popularity in recent years because of the strong aroma and flavor granted by a high terpene content. However, “sauce” is said to take terpene contents to another level. There’s no better smell than popping the lid off of a mason jar filled with sauce.
Is it worth the hype, though? We’ll go over everything you need to know to become a sauce boss.
What’s Inside a Live Resin Sauce?
Most of the cannabis concentrate being called “sauce” is actually live resin sauce. It looks like clear crystals drenched in a darker yellow to amber liquid.
The liquid portion is refered to as a High Terpene Extract (HTE) due to the high terpene and low cannabinoid content in comparison to other extracts. While it may not pack much of a punch in terms of potency, the flavor and aroma is as high as cannabis concentrates get.
The solid portion is called THCa Crystalline. THCa is the precursor and inactive version of THC. When an extract consists of mostly crystals with a small amount of HTE, it is considered a High Cannabinoid Extract (HCE).
The “live” portion of moniker is used to inform consumers that the product was extracted from cannabis that was immediately frozen after harvest. Many extractors claim to use fresh frozen cannabis to preserve terpenes.
Cured Resin vs. Live Resin
Other hashmakers, like the team at Extractioneering stand by extracts made from cured material. The main reason? Biodiversity.
Dr. Daniel Hayden claims the terpenes being preserved in live resin sauce and other live products are typically higher in monoterpenes. However, there are ditrerpenes, triterpenes, sesquiterpenes, and several other more complex terpenes that are absent in “live” concentrates because they only surface when cannabis is cured.
Proponents of extracting from cured materials believe the lack of a diverse terpene profile in live products leaves out some of the effects from the full spectrum of benefits that cannabis has to offer.
For a while, extract artists were focused on targeting individual cannabinoids like THC because it is the main medical component. However, research has shown cannabinoids work together with terpenes to create new medical benefits. That’s what sparked an interest in full spectrum extracts.
Full spectrum extracts aim to preserve all the beneficial compounds in cannabis while removing the unnecessary ones like waxes, lipids, and fats.
Breathe in the good shit, leave out the rest.
How to Tell the Difference
Lab testing is the key to guaranteeing you’re not just being sold a jar of liquid terpenes. You’re better off purchasing a bottle of e-liquid if all you’re getting is food-grade terpenes and barely any cannabinoids.
The terpene content of your live resin sauce should be no more than 30 percent anyway. That doesn’t mean 30 percent liquid and 70 percent crystals. That part depends on whether you prefer HCE or HTE. We mean the actual percentage of total terpenes on a test result. While we love terps, having too much of it results in an extremely undesriable product.
Too high of a terpene percentage is overwhelming and discomforting to the throat and lungs. The Extractioneering team finds terpene levels “higher than 40 percent to be unpleasant and tipping the balance of natural chemistry.”
One way to tell the terpene content is off balance without lab testing is by simply dabbing the liquid portion of the sauce. If you find yourself in a coughing fit from an assault on your throat and lungs, there is probably too high of a terpene content present in the extract.