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Scientists Find That Aluminum Cans Strip Cannabinoids From Infused Drinks

“Our theory is the cannabis material will stick to the liner”

Cannabis beverages and aluminum cans have a problematic relationship that could prove costly for licenced producers with drink production lines built for the ubiquitous metal containers. The devil is in the molecular details. 

Scientists have determined that liners inside aluminum cans can cause cannabis drinks to lose their potency. That means by the time a pot drink is put in a can, shipped, stored in a warehouse, displayed in a store, and finally consumed, the buzz promised on the label may have diminished or disappeared. 

Can manufacturers add the liners to prevent drinks from taking on a metallic taste, to reduce corrosion of the can, and to improve shelf stability. But when pot drinks are under pressure, the liner can attract tiny emulsified droplets of active cannabis ingredients like THC. 

“Our theory is the cannabis material, the droplets, will stick to the liner and cling on it. When you open the can to take a drink, it will lose its potency,” Vertosa founder and chief science officer Harold Han told Yahoo Finance Canada in an interview. 

Han holds a Ph.D in chemistry from NYU, and has authored two patents in emulsion chemistry. His California-based company works with cannabis-infused beverage makers to develop emulsion solutions to mitigate the effect of can liners leeching away cannabis compounds. 

Oil, cannabis or otherwise, does not mix with water. Nanoemulsion helps solve that problem by breaking down oily compounds to a microscopic level so they can be suspended in a drink.  

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