20200821 Cannabis Guide Textures Cannabis
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The Kiva Cannabis Field Guide

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The history of cannabis

Natural, productive & powerful

Cannabis has been providing healing benefits to humanity — in addition to food, fuel, and fiber — for more than 12,000 years. From the Scythians to the Rastafari, the alchemists to the curanderos, cannabis has found a place in healing traditions across the world. Cannabis was added to the U.S. Pharmacopeia in 1850, and every major pharmacy in America offered medicinal cannabis tinctures up until it became prohibited in the 1930s.

In 2012, Colorado and Washington became the first states to legalize recreational marijuana, and more states soon followed, marking the beginning of the end of nearly 100 years of cannabis prohibition. Today, cannabis continues to provide recreation, restoration, and relief for approximately 200 million people worldwide. And this is just the beginning.

The story of strains

Around the world, cannabis plants were bred for unique purposes and effects into variations which we now call strains. These strains fall under three subspecies, each with unique physical characteristics and psychoactive effects. Today, most strains are actually bred as hybrids, with the primary effect determined by the dominant strain.

Cannabis Sativa

Tall, open-branched and known for its stimulating, mind-altering effects, sativa-dominant strains are typically uplifting, inspiring, and energizing.

Cannabis Indica

Shorter, bushier and cone-shaped, the indica strain is known for its sedating, mellow effect that is felt throughout the body.

Cannabis Ruderalis

Short and branchless, ruderalis has naturally low levels of THC and is primarily used for breeding with other strains.


Utilizing strain-specific 100% live resin and solventless live rosin enables the production of a distinctive full-spectrum effect. This gives consumers the opportunity to choose their specific experience (including the taste, aroma, and high) based not just on the strain type (sativa, indica, or hybrid) but also on the precise terpene and cannabinoid blend that a particular strain yields. This way, individuals can address their needs from preferred weed strains like Cookies, Sour Diesel, or Wedding Cake.

Have you heard of Hemp?

Hemp is defined as cannabis that contains CBD but doesn’t have a psychoactive effect due to a naturally low amount of THC (<0.3%). While CBD alone seems to have therapeutic effects, the presence of THC has been shown to increase its effectiveness (called ‘The Entourage Effect’). Unlike legal cannabis, most hemp-based CBD products are unregulated and untested. For this reason, CBD and THC products found at licensed dispensaries are the safest and most effective option for consumers.

The chemistry of cannabinoids


Cannabinoids are the chemical compounds found in cannabis responsible for its unique effects. THC is known for delivering the psychoactive 'high,' euphoric, and mood-enhancing effects, along with many of its health benefits. CBD, on the other hand, is THC's non-intoxicating relative, yet shares a relaxing characteristic. Like THC, CBD may help users manage various health conditions, but with little to no risk of mind-altering side effects. CBN, a newly researched cannabinoid, is also found to have tranquil properties. Additionally, THCV is gaining attention for its potential appetite-suppressant and blood sugar regulation properties, while CBG is being studied for its potential anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects.

Tapping into terpenes

Terpenes are fragrant oils found in fruits, herbs and plants, and the main ingredients that give essential oils like lavender, lemon, and mint, their unique aromas, flavors, and medicinal benefits. For thousands of years, these aromatic compounds have been used as a natural way to control emotions and mood. Terpenes not only add flavor and aroma to cannabis products, studies suggest that when paired with THC, CBD and other cannabinoids, terpenes can enhance or alter the effects given by the cannabinoids themselves.

The process of extraction

We can’t simply take the cannabis plant and put it straight into an edible. First, the cannabinoids and other active ingredients need to be extracted from the plant, just as tea leaves need to be steeped. There are various ways to distill the chemical compounds from the leaves to produce a concentrated extract.

Cold Water Hash

This handcrafted, labor-intensive technique creates a clean, pure cannabis concentrate. The plant is repeatedly washed in ice water, allowing resinous glands called trichomes to separate from the leaf. These trichomes contain cannabinoids, terpenes, and other compounds which are then captured and filtered.

This extract captures the essence of a whole plant experience and delivers a superior taste.


Within two hours of harvest, cannabis flower is flash-frozen to preserve the rich flavors, complex aromas and broad terpene profiles of the plant. From there, the flower is delicately extracted to create the most true-to-the plant cannabis extracts possible: live resin and solventless live rosin. These superior concentrates retain all the delicate cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes normally lost in the cannabis drying and curing process. The result is a full-spectrum high, which offers a richer, brighter, and more complex experience than most edibles provide.


Distillation takes unrefined cannabis oil and purifies its contents through a combination of carefully controlled temperatures and pressure points. The purification process is so complete, the resulting refined extract is free from fats, waxes, and even terpenes, ultimately creating a pure yet powerful concentrate with a neutral taste that is easily infused with other flavors.

Find your sweet spot

Choose from the list of possibilities below, and we’ll point you to the edibles that fit the bill.