Everything You Need to Know about RSO and Whole Plant Extract

You might be scratching your head asking “what the heck is RSO?” RSO is part of a broader category of extracts called WPE or whole plant extract. RSO or Rick Simpson Oil, Full Extract Cannabis oil and even Phoenix Tears are all names for this very versatile concentrate. Still unsure what we’re talking about? Dockside is here to help you understand and get started with WPE.

This thick, dark-colored oil is made by heating cannabis flower with a solvent, like pure alcohol, then cooking the mixture down to activate cannabinoids while removing traces of the solvent. This process was made public by Rick Simpson, a Nova Scotia engineer turned medical cannabis cultivator and activist. He believed in cannabis as a healing plant and advocated for patients to grow and make their own medicine at home. The extraction process used to make WPE preserves a greater range of major and minor cannabinoids and other phyto-compounds (chemicals created by plants) such as terpenes, flavonoids, and alkaloids than any other extraction process. WPE is capable of producing what is known as the entourage effect.  The final product is most often consumed orally and has a bitter flavor, similar to burnt coffee.

Hand holding tanker of rso oil.

How WPE is packaged. Most often, WPE comes in something the industry refers to as a tanker. A tanker is basically just a syringe pump (picture a syringe without the needle). Due to the high viscosity of WPE, tankers make it fairly easy to squeeze out what you need without additional tools.

Do not dab with WPE.  Despite being categorized as a concentrate, it does not provide a pleasant dabbing experience. Most concentrates intended for dabbing are made using unique processes that isolate a small range of compounds resulting in a purer weed flavor and a more enjoyable consumption experience.

How to use WPE: How do most people use WPE? A quick google search will show that the most common way to use WPE is orally. WPE is fully activated and online sources say it can be consumed right out of the tanker or blended into coconut oil for cooking or topicals.

Those in the cannabis industry recommend taking it with a form of sugar such as honey or maple syrup. The sugar will ramp up metabolism causing it to take effect much quicker. An example would be to add a rice sized dose of WPE to a spoon and cover with a squeeze of honey or maple syrup. Just enough to cover it.

Another helpful way to consume WPE is to squeeze out individual rice-sized doses on a sheet of parchment paper. Stick the parchment in the freezer. Once frozen the individual doses can be consumed easily (and with less mess). Incorporate a toothpick so you don’t even have to risk sticky fingers.

Dosing WPE: The average dose of WPE is the size of a grain of rice or about 0.025g. Therefore, there are about 40 (0.025g) doses in a gram of WPE.  You can use the following formula divided by 40 to calculate the potency per grain of rice-sized dose. Wondering how to convert cannabinoid percentages to milligrams? This formula is easy to remember as tankers all come in 1g units. Multiply the cannabinoid percentage by the weight in milligrams (1000mg for a gram, 500mg for a half gram). Say you’re using 1g tanker with 55% THC content.

Total weight in mg x percentage expressed as decimal = cannabinoid in mg
For example: 1000mg (1g) x 0.55 (55% THC) = 550mg/gram in WPE

TLDR: for grams, just add a zero to the percentage.


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