If you mentioned Cannabis Oil in South Africa just a few years ago, it’s something that next to no one would have heard about. Even most of the trendiest cannabis enthusiasts I knew at the time weren’t prepared for the fast approaching new world. Along with the boom in cannabis concentrates and oils came a lexicon of new frontier colloquialisms and three letter acronyms such as BHO, RSO, winterization, decarboxylation, reclaim and Rosin to name just a few. But not all has been well for those venturing into this new world; prohibition is keeping the water muddied and the sharks well fed.
Before we get into the nitty gritty of it, I do need to make it crystal clear that “Cannabis Oil” can refer to any number of concoctions that your friendly online or neighborhood dealer will gladly sell to you. Which makes it a monumental task to even begin defining the tips and tricks involved with distinguishing the cream from the crap. Besides, that’s not what this article is about. This article is instead for the people who are being preyed on by unscrupulous cannabis oil producers who are nothing short of the worst sort of drug dealer – a new breed of dealer that feeds on their victims, who out of desperation and in the hope of adding a few years, months or even hours to their lives, make the mistake of treading where there are snakes in the grass.
So let’s cut the metaphors and be frank. As long as cannabis is illegal neither you nor your dealer will have any idea of what exactly is in those few grams or millilitres of cannabis oil that you’ve just paid so handsomely for. Sure, it may come in a nifty branded container or a syringe that gives it that pharmacy feel, but the fact remains that no matter how wonderfully packaged the product is or how full of hugs and kisses your dealer’s Facebook page appears to be, what your are buying is most likely the product of someone who is winging it. Someone who has most likely scored the cheapest weed they could find, processed it in the least refined way and believe that you are sufficiently uninformed to be none the wiser. So poor has been my personal experience with most of the cannabis concentrates presented to me that I gave up the fat dab habit well before it took off for the rest of the country. For every decent quality concentrate that came my way there were several others that I would not want to touch with a 10 foot dab tool. To this day I still flinch at the thought of some of the things that I ingested in those not so long ago early days.
What chance does a ripe for the picking and unintentionally oblivious medical patient therefore stand when wading into a system that is rigged from the start? Gone are the days when you could judge your bag of weed at some degree by face value. The techniques of processing cannabis into oils, tinctures and other concentrates are refined to such an extent that it now takes a completely blind leap of faith that your dealer has your best interests at heart. Maybe you’ll be lucky and find a good connection. Not one who is fuelled on hippie fervour and slowly kills you with their ignorant kindness, not one who lets you down every time they’re out of stock and most certainly not one who willingly profits from misleading you.
That’s why rather than bore you with the intricacies or being sucked into the name and shame game, it’s imperative that I rather take this time to tell you that it is the wild west out there. The place is packed with charlatans running rampant. There’s a lot of deliberately dodgy ones and there are as many others floundering in the quicksand of their good intentions, but there are also some good guys to be found.
Never before has there been so many dynamics at play when getting your hands on some sweet medicinal Mary Jane. So before you take the cannabis oil plunge with both feet… stop… breathe… do some homework… shop around. We’d hate for you to end up as just another new pupil to the ancient art of being ripped off.