What Is The REAL Cost Of MAKING Delta-8- THC?

What Is The REAL Cost Of Making Delta-8- THC?

In this post, we discuss calculating the real cost of CBD conversions to Delta 8 to ensure profitability

Often derivative products like Delta 8 distillate are taken at face value when being compared. Currently, this is the case when we speak with operators about CBD isolate and Delta-8 THC distillate. The decision-making process always centers around comparing the price of a kilo of CBD isolate (currently averaging $533.00 / kg) to the price of a kilo of CBG isolate ( currently around $1,150.00 / kg), which at the surface shows the potential to double the gross revenue.

Once you dive into the hard costs of converting the CBD isolate to Delta-8 THC distillate, the story changes dramatically. Below, we go through a calculation that takes into consideration a variety of variables when calculating the costs of converting CBD. The fixed costs in this calculation are based on R&D by a research chemist in a licensed facility.

What Is The Real Cost Of Converting CBD ISOLATE To Delta-8?

Based on our calculations, there’s still room for the Delta-8 distillate price per kilogram to drop before the conversion becomes unprofitable. Our model suggests that, on this scale, the breakeven price per kilo is around $923.00.

Based on our forecast published in last month’s report, this could happen as early as May of this year. We advise our clients not to keep large inventories of Delta-8 distillate kilos in-house due to the current Delta-8 distillate pricing volatility (*as of July 2022 prices for CBD isolate have dropped to $250-350 on bulk kilo orders).

Input Categories Assumptions

CBD quantity (kg) 10
Market value of CBD isolate $ 533.00
Total cost of CBD $ 5,330.00
Solvent quantity (Liters) 15
Total estimated solvent cost $ 1,400.00
Catalyst quantity (grams) 50
Total estimated catalyst cost $ 50.00
Total estimated labor cost* $ 500.00
Total analytical testing cost   (QA / QC) $ 300.00

*Subject to change as pricing fluctuates on inputs


*Labor cost is estimated based on 20 hours
of labor @ $25.00/hr
**Conversion yield is calculated after conversion,
work up, and purification to final product.

OUTPUT Categories Assumptions

Conversion yield* 85%
Delta-8 THC quantity (kg) 8.5
Market value of Delta-8 THC /   kg $1,150.00
Potential Revenue Estimated Profit $ 9,775.00 $ 2,195.00

Total Input Cost = ( Cost of CBD + Cost of Solvent + Cost of Catalyst + Labor + Analytical Testing )
Potential Revenue=( (Percent Yield from Reaction * Input Quantity of CBD) * Delta-8 Market Value )
Estimated Profit = Revenue – Input Cost

You can use these calculations to know precisely where profitability lies when converting CBD isolate kilo to Delta 8 THC distillate. Based on these numbers many processors are tanking the market and their businesses by selling below cost due to a lack of proper calculating. We expect to see many processors going out of business. Know your math and stay profitable.

This article was edited for clarity and written by Eighth Revolution, a cannabis consulting firm specializing in financial road mapping, business setup, and facility buildout. 

Ashley Dellinger

Ashley Dellinger

Ashley Dellinger is a trailblazer in the cannabis and hemp sectors, serving as the Director of Innovation at The Hemp Collect. With a keen visionary mindset, she not only propels advancements in these industries but also showcases her versatility as a seasoned professional writer based in Oregon. As a collaborative force, Ashley works alongside leading brands, processors, and retailers to elevate industry standards. Ashley Dellinger's work not only sets new benchmarks but also inspires others to pursue excellence. For a closer look into her insights and experiences, connect with Ashley on LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook.

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