äkta Live Heads

All of us at here at äkta take extreme pride in producing high quality solventless hashish-based products, with the final result always in mind. This mindset is what keeps us motivated and energized in the lab and fuels our passion for hash. We have been waiting for the opportunity to raise the bar in Colorado and the cosmos have shown us the time is now! It’s with pure and absolute excitement that we offer our selections of Live Heads to the Colorado recreational market.
In this blog post, we’re going to discuss a few different aspects we feel are important when it comes to Live Heads. From going over what Live Heads are, to why we love them, while also covering what strains we are using and finally touching on optimal storage conditions and dabbing techniques. We understand everyone has their own process when consuming Live Heads, the ultimate inhalation method is up to the individual, but here we will provide guidelines we personally recommend and utilize ourselves. Because of this, we feel obligated to share our take on hash, or as we call it, Live Heads, with you all.

What are Live Heads?

To enjoy the “Entourage Effect,” a multitude of the plant’s phytochemical compounds must be utilized; most importantly its cannabinoids and terpenes. These compounds are found within what look like shiny, crystally specs coating the flower of the cannabis plant. To the untrained eye, this is all you’ll notice. However, once we zoom in, we notice those shiny specs are bulbous, resin-filled structures that sit atop large stalks attached at a cellular level to the plant’s surface. They are mainly found on the plant’s flowers or buds, but are also found covering its leaves, stems, and stalk. Those bulbs are actually a phytochemical powerhouse containing a sticky, resinous substance that contain most of the plant’s aromatic and flavor producing compounds like terpenes and flavonoids, its medicinal compounds like CBD, CBG and CBC, and its psychoactive compounds like THC, THCv and CBN. While those compounds attract us humans to the plant for various reasons, they also serve the plant by acting as a defense mechanism to deter unwanted pests and pathogens…although the deer seem to love the stuff.
Isolating the glands is no easy feat, it requires delicacy and attention to detail. In the lab, absolute care and sensitivity are the most desired traits when handling trichomes/Live Heads. Consider how large these glands are; 60μ (μ=micron) is the average size for a grain of salt, 70μ is roughly the average diameter of one strand of hair, while 90u is the average size for one grain of fine sand. With this in mind, the best of the best Live Heads are usually the size of one grain of fine sand (90μ). To broaden the concept, imagine isolating hundreds of thousands to millions of glands with the utmost care so they don’t rupture as they are incredibly delicate…serious attention to detail is required!
We call them “Live” Heads because the trichomes/resin glands are kept in the same state they were in when the plant was alive. This is done by immediately freezing the cannabis flower when harvested and requires it to remain in sub-freezing temperatures from harvest to extraction in order to preserve trichome integrity and the most volatile desirable compounds found in the resin glands. Fortunately, our lab utilizes a cold room to separate and extract these trichomes, giving us the ability to preserve them to the best of our ability and minimize degradation, ensuring you receive them in a state of optimal quality and ripeness; any other environment used to isolate Live Heads can lead to premature degradation.
For our launch, we’ll be releasing Live Heads in the 90μ size range, or to get more technical for the connoisseurs, 119μ through 90μ in size. Resin glands that fall in this micron range are considered by many to be the prime trichome size when it comes to ice-water extracted hashish; the glands are clean, ripe, full of flavor, and offer a potent psychoactive experience. Some cultivars may produce higher quality resin in larger micron ranges like 149-120μ or even higher, and some in lower ranges like 89-70μ, and we will expand to those micron ranges if that happens to be the case with a specific cultivar, however we feel the 90μ range is prime and ideal for most, if not all, of the cultivars in our current lineup. With living-soil, organic, single-source, flash frozen cannabis flower grown by our sister company, Hava Gardens, it is easy to anticipate a clean, pure, unadulterated, and full experience upon interaction with our Live Heads.

Why smoke Live Heads?

For those looking for a clean high that provides arguably the best and fullest experience of an individual cultivar/strain, high-quality Live Heads are the most desired product. It’s unequivocally a unique experience when it comes to consuming cannabis and its extracts; cleaner, purer, and more potent than smoking flower, yet highly nuanced and containing more of the flower’s full essence than consuming rosin. Many people will compare Live Heads to Live Rosin, though we feel these are two exclusive methods of enjoyment/medicating that each provide unique experiences when it comes to aroma, flavor, consistency and even effects. Experiencing Live Heads gives us the best traits of each strain and provides an avenue to form a relationship with the plant we could not experience otherwise by smoking the entire bud or its highly purified or isolated oils. It’s an opportunity to connect to the plant on an external level and embrace ourselves on an internal level.

How did we decide what strains to use?

Our Head Hashishin (Hashmaker) and Director of Research & Development Michael Marrero, and his team of Hashishins are looking for the right strains with optimal resin production and terpene profile. Optimal resin can be defined as optimally ripe, resilient trichomes, full of oil (resin), that easily and cleanly detach from the trichome stalk, and can be collected with minimal damage to the trichomes themselves. Only strains that meet these standards will be used and integrated into our Live Heads lineup.
To reiterate, it is not easy for someone with an untrained eye to understand what type of cannabis strain will yield proper resin; it’s a process backed by years of experience and an understanding of each cannabis cultivar’s genetic history. Additionally, although the most sought-after micron is 90μ, in some cases, certain strains have higher quality glands at different micron ranges. For example, if Strain A is producing quality resin at the 90μ range but Strain B is producing high quality resin at the 70μ range we will release Strain A in its 90u range and Strain B in its 70u range, and/or combine the ideal micron ranges of different strains when making blends. Strain blends will be meticulously curated for Live Heads, with combinations made based on similar ideal trichome size, complementing terpene profiles, and the quality of melt on the resin glands. Diligently examining and observing the quality of each cultivar’s resin glands over the long run will help us bring you the highest quality Live Heads each cultivar can produce, as well as give us a shot at creating the best blends with strains that complement each other in all aspects.

Storage and Smoking Methods

The unique experience Live Heads bring to the table is one that should not be missed, and many, especially the connoisseurs, consider it the Holy Grail of cannabis experience. That being said, it is also a product that needs proper care in order to maximize its shelf stability and quality for long-term storage. If you are considering storing the product away for longer than ten days, we suggest leaving it in the original packaging, with the cap tightly sealed, and finding a spot for it in the freezer, ideally in a vacuum sealed bag or stored in an airtight container to prevent excess moisture buildup from degrading the resin. This will help maintain the integrity of the trichome glands and preserve the valuable terpenes in them to savor and enjoy when the time is right. However, if you want to enjoy our Live Heads sooner rather than later (within ten days), we suggest you keep the cap on nice and tightly sealed when not in use and store it in the fridge in between uses. Again, this helps to preserve the resin quality within shorter storage time frames. When removing Live Heads containers from the fridge or freezer, be sure to allow the container to acclimate to room temperature, as opening the container while still cold may lead to condensation buildup inside the jar, exposing the resin to moisture that can lead to degradation.
When dabbing, the ideal method we suggest is to make flags out of the Live Heads. This can be done by taking a portion of the sandy hashish/resin out of the container, placing it on parchment paper or similar material, and pressing the hash with your fingers until the trichomes rupture, the oil is released, and a “flag” of clear, golden resin is formed. This flag can now be sectioned into individual dabs and is much easier to handle than the raw, sandy resin. This helps to sustain quantity so you’re not dabbing too much at a time, as well as making it easier to find the proper dose/amount that works for you when consuming. Additionally, it also helps to bind the glands together and, in essence, prepare them to melt. Keep in mind that flags are meant for immediate and/or short-term use and don’t lend well to long term storage, as with the glands ruptured and the oil released, the precious resin is fully exposed to the environment and prone to oxidization/degradation of cannabinoids and loss of terpenes. Proper storage and handling will allow you to keep and enjoy our Live Heads at optimal quality for the short-term and beyond!
As we move more into 2022, stay tuned for a variety of Live Heads releases from äkta Creations. We will release more information about trichome glands and their interaction as well as take a deeper dive into the world of terpenes and their interaction with solventless hash as well as edibles; we’re just scratching the surface on what’s possible. Our energy and passion are poured into every batch, and we take extreme pride in our final results. Please let us know your thoughts and feel free to reach out with any questions you may encounter about our Live Heads; our intent is all for your delight.
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