What is THCA?


With as much attention as THC gets, it’s actually crazy that THCA has only become mainstream recently.  The two cannabinoids really do go hand in hand.  But what is THCA?  Read on to learn all about this cannabinoid that is just as responsible for a cannabis high as its more famous counterpart.  

While we don’t have any THCA in store (yet…), we do have an excellent selection of other hemp products that will absolutely take you where you need to go.  For delta 8 lovers, we have an epic selection of blunts, prerolls, and gummies.  If HHC is more your jam, we’ve got you covered with prerolls, disposable vapes, gummies, and newly added blunts.

The Endocannabinoid System

I know, I know, you came here to learn about THCA, not the endocannabinoid system.  But, in order to understand what THCA is, the ECS is really the best place to start.  The endocannabinoid system exists in our own bodies and contains a series of receptors.  These receptors can be categorized into two groups: CB1 and CB2.  The whole system is designed to work with our bodies own cannabinoids.  Cannabinoids found in animals are known as “endocannabinoids”, while those found in plants are “phytocannabinoids”.  On a molecular level, the two are very similar which is why the cannabinoids found within hemp and cannabis interact with our ECS.

The CB1 receptors are mostly located in the central nervous system.  In the brain, these receptors are responsible for regulating the release of neurotransmitters.  CB2 receptors, on the other hand, exist mostly in our immune tissues and play a role in regulating inflammation and pain.

What is THCA?

THCA is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that is abundantly present in raw cannabis.  Like CBD, it is non-intoxicating.  Unlike CBD, when you expose THCA to light and heat, it becomes psychoactive.  See, when you light THCA on fire (you know, when you’re smoking a joint for instance), it becomes THC, and will, in fact, get you high.  So, essentially, THCA is a precursor to THC.

The reason that the THCA in raw weed doesn’t get us high is because its molecules are too large to fit inside our CB1 receptors.  The CB1 receptors’ interaction with certain cannabinoids is responsible for the high we feel when we consume them.  Since THCA can’t interact, there is no high. 

Ways to convert THCA include lighting cannabis on fire via smoking it, using the heat from a vape, or decarbing before making edibles.  When this happens, the heat alters the chemical structure of the THCA by removing a carboxylic acid group.  This process converts THCA to THC, and leaves the molecules perfectly sized to attach to our CB1 receptors.


Like I said, THCA in its true, original form is non-psychoactive.  That doesn’t mean it’s worthless, though.  In order to experience this cannabinoid in its true form, you would have to consume raw cannabis that has not been exposed to heat.  Though it doesn’t interact with our ECS, this cannabinoid may still have some promising potential.  More research is definitely needed, but it appears that THCA may offer therapeutic effects.  This is especially promising for people who want to enjoy the benefits of hemp and cannabis without getting high.

Once THCA is exposed to heat, it becomes THC, so its effects are the effects of THC.  You can expect to feel high, euphoric, giggly, relaxed, creative, or maybe even a little hungry or sleepy.  

The bottom line:

What is THCA?  It’s a precursor to THC.  Just add heat, and presto, you have a very intoxicating cannabinoid on your hands!  If you prefer to keep THCA in its true form, you need to consume raw flower, or a specially made tincture.  

Be sure to keep an eye out for THCA in our online store.  In the meantime, if you like your hemp to get you high, check out what we already have in stock!  Our blunts, prerolls, and vapes are available in indica, sativa, and hybrid so you can curate the perfect vibe at any time.  If you have a high tolerance, our gummies are definitely for you!  They clock in at 100+mg of cannabinoids per serving, to ensure that you soar sky high.  No matter which products you choose, you can rest assured that you’re in good hands here at DVNT.  We offer organic, lab tested products so you can stop worrying and focus on feeling good.