About Terpenes


What are terpenes?

If you are familiar with “essential oils” then you already have some experience with terpenes. Terpenes are compounds found in cannabis and many other plants, herbs, and fruits and are responsible for their aromas, flavor, and physiological effects.

Though scent is what terpenes are generally known for, they play an equally important role in influencing how we feel and are known to have anti-anxiety, anti-inflammatory, and anti-microbial properties.

What is the difference between terpenes and essential oils?

The main difference between terpenes and essential oils is that essential oils contain terpenes as well as a variety of other compounds. For instance, because essential oils use whole-plant extracts, they will contain terpenes, but also other types of molecules and hydrocarbons. On the other hand, isolated terpenes are just that, isolates of just themselves.

So, while pine essential oil may contain alpha-pinene, gamma-terpinene, beta-pinene (along with other non-terpene compounds), isolated terpenes are selectively removed from a plant meaning that an alpha-pinene isolate is going to be almost entirely made up of the alpha-pinene terpene.

Where do terpenes come from?

Terpenes are found in high quantities in various essential oils. The terpenes in these essential oils are responsible for the uplifting affects you experience if you smell the rind of a lemon or walk through a pine forest.

For example, limonene is in the essential oil of lemons and limes, the familiar smell of lavender is created by linalool, and another common terpene is pinene, found in – you guessed it – pine needles.

What can terpenes be used for?

Throughout history, terpenes have been used for a wide variety of purposes, from food flavoring to perfumery to therapeutic uses. Terpenes are also widely used with cannabis concentrates, both for dabbing and vaping, and are often the common component in cannabis vape cartridges.

But the most noteworthy role terpenes play is in our consumption of food. Terpenes can be mixed with water or beverages and are safe to ingest when rated “Food Grade or GRAS”. “GRAS” is an acronym for the phrase Generally Recognized As Safe and refers to food additives.

What are the medical benefits of terpenes?

The essential oils revolution has brought with it scientific research and awareness of the medical benefits of terpenes and aromatherapy. Nearly all the major terpenes in cannabis are either analgesic (anti-pain), or anti-inflammatory. You can read more about the benefits of terpenes here.

What are “terpene effects” and the “entourage effect”?

Though terpenes are known for their scent, they play an equally important role in influencing how we will feel when we consume them.  For instance, limonene, pinene and terpinolene are known for their energizing and uplifting effects, while myrcene, caryophyllene and linalool are sedating and relaxing. These are known as “terpene effects”.

But, the most fascinating characteristic of terpenes is their ability to interact synergistically with other compounds in the plant, including cannabinoids.

Cannabinoids and terpenes work together to boost and modulate the effects of one another in the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), the system responsible for maintaining a state of homeostasis in the body.  This phenomenon is known today as the “entourage effect”.

This is also why many consider full-spectrum products as being better than CBD isolates when it comes to improving your general health. In case you were leaning toward a CBD isolate, you might want to rethink that now that you know terpene effects are key to the entourage effect.

Terpenes in Cannabis

From skunky, to fruity, to floral.  The bouquet of smells associated with cannabis can be highly diverse and varied from cultivar to cultivar. There are over a hundred different terpenes found in cannabis, which have evolved with the cannabis plant as a defense mechanism against bacteria, fungi, insects, and other pests.

Terpenes are produced depending on external factors such as humidity, light intensity, and temperature. It is for this reason that different plants have different terpenes. As such, the difference between the effects of an “Indica” versus a “Sativa” is mainly in the terpene profile of the plant.

Will terpenes change my experience with cannabis?

Yes! Terpenes both modulate and potentiate cannabinoids. A groundbreaking 2011 paper by the neurologist and researcher Ethan Russo described the way cannabinoids and terpenes work together to boost and modulate the effects of one another in the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS).

For a long time, THC was considered the only chemical of psychoactive importance in cannabis. Russo and team helped reveal how other cannabinoids (like CBD) and terpenes can either increase or decrease the effects of THC and other chemicals in the body that interact with the ECS.

Are terpenes safe?

Yes. However, just like many other types of plant compounds, they can be potent and natural does not always mean safe. Golden Apple Terpenes are terpenes isolates, with a little going a long way. When these are in their pure form, they ARE DANGEROUS and must be handled with the utmost care for your own safety. However, once diluted properly, terpene isolates are safe to use, smell, eat, smoke, whatever.

Using our Terpene products


How do I use my Golden Apple Terpenes?

Please keep in mind that all our Golden Apple Cannabis Co. terpene products must be diluted prior to use. Terpenes cannot be consumed without being diluted, as it could be very dangerous for your health. You can mix our Golden Apple Terpenes with other plant extracts, concentrates, and oils.  You can also dilute them with a carrier oil like almond or coconut oil.

How much of my Golden Apple Terpenes should I use?

Terpenes are dangerous when consumed in a pure, concentrated form and must be handled with care for your own safety and they ABSOLUTELY SHOULD be mixed and diluted before ingestion.

Although generalizations are difficult to make, we suggest a maximum of 0.25-0.5% for ingesting in drink and food preparations. If you’re making a cocktail or any single serving beverage it only takes ONE OR TWO DROPS per 8 oz drink. They are very potent.

Regarding e-liquids or distillate for vape cartridges, we recommended you to start at lower levels of around 1%, and then work your way up to a maximum of 5% concentration, or until you’ve reached your desired taste or effects.

How to do tastings with Golden Apple Terpenes?

There are many ways to test and experience terpenes. One could spray terpenes on a perfume or fragrance testing strip to test the aroma, or mix in a cannabis distillate and vaporize. However, one of our favorite methods is to use a drop or two in a 4oz-6oz glass of soda water. By using the soda water technique it’s possible to get the aroma and taste of the terpene.

How should I mix my Golden Apple Terpenes?

Use care when mixing, measuring or using terpenes. Make sure you take a look at the percentage and figure out how much you need. Accuracy is important, the amount you use really depends on how much final product you want and small discrepancies can drastically alter the flavor.

To measure use precise instruments like pipettes, graduated cylinders, and burets to ensure the correct amount is added. For instance, if you want to use 1% by volume for a yield of 10 ml, you should use 9.9 ml of base + 0.1 ml (i.e., 1%) of Golden Apple Terpenes.

Can I mix my Golden Apple Terpenes with my water or beverages?

You can definitely add terpenes to your water or beverage. Terpenes have been used as flavor ingredients and are safe to ingest when rated “Food Grade or GRAS”. “GRAS” is an acronym for the phrase Generally Recognized As Safe and refers to food additives. Feel free to check out our Terpene Cocktails for beverage ideas.

All Golden Apple Cannabis Co. terpene products are steam distilled, organic, and food-grade. But while our terpenes can be safe to ingest, they must be diluted prior to use and should only be used by trained professionals.

Can I mix-and-match my Golden Apple Terpenes?

Absolutely! Just make sure you stay within the suggested concentration as it’s easy to go too wild and add too many terpenes at ones.

Are there cannabinoids in Golden Apple Terpenes?

No, terpenes do not have any cannabinoids in them. Cannabis is made up of hundreds of active chemical compounds. Cannabinoids and (most) terpenes develop in the resin glands, or trichomes, on the flower and leaves of cannabis plants. However, they are different classes of organic compounds.

How do I store my Golden Apple Terpenes?

Make sure to store your Golden Apple Terpenes in a cool dark place with the cap on.  However, if you really want to improve longevity and freshness, storing them in your fridge is the by far the best option.