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8 facts you need to know about cannabis terpenes.

Terpenes are the main class of aromatic molecules found in hemp and many other plants, such as Lavender, Rosemary, Bergamot. They are the molecules responsible for the aroma, taste and sometimes even the effect that therapeutic plants have on the human body. The characteristic that fascinates us the most is their ability to interact with other plant compounds and activate the synergistic benefits called "The entourage effect which we have talked so much about before.

Hemp or cannabis contains dozens of terpenes that work synergistically to activate other compounds in the plant, such as phytocannabinoids. Studies suggest that terpenes can adjust the potency of phytocannabinoids such as Cannabidiol (CBD) or Cannabigerol (CBG). Since our sense of smell is linked to the emotion and memory centres in the brain, it is believed that there is a "cause and effect" between the aroma of terpenes and general mood enhancement.

Do hemp terpenes contain CBD?


Terpenes do not contain CBD. As a phytocannabinoid, CBD is a distinct type of molecule that exists alongside terpenes, but is completely independent of them. Terpenes, on the other hand, promote aromas and flavours particular to the hemp plant (and all plants worldwide), as well as altering the way cannabinoids like CBD interact with our cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2), which are found throughout the brain and body, known as the cannabinoid system. Each hemp genetics and
Cannabis has a unique combination of terpenes known as its "terpene profile".

Terpenes are an influential compound in their own right, and the different combinations of terpenes have made them important to many consumers. There are hundreds of terpenes found in cannabis plants, but a few stand out from the rest.

Here are the 5 main terpenes in hemp:


Myrcene is generally considered to be one of the most common terpenes found in cannabis plants. In a given
of cannabis, myrcene can account for between 30% and 65% of the essential oils extracted from the plant.

Myrcene is known for its musky, earthy aroma, a scent accented by a hint of clove. And while its aroma evokes a tranquil relaxation in the Swiss forest, so do its characteristics; myrcene is thought to promote relaxation and temporarily aid sleep during occasional periods of insomnia.

Myrcene, which is also found in hops, lemongrass, parsley and wild thyme, is already familiar to many of us. It is commonly extracted and used in a wide range of products, including perfumes and foods.

  • Aroma: musky, herbal and earthy with a hint of cloves
  • Benefits: relaxingsleep promoting, known antioxidant.
  • Fun facts: also found in mango, lemongrass, thyme and hops.


Caryophyllene is another terpene commonly found in cannabis and hemp plants. It is thought to interact primarily with the CB2 receptor of the endocannabinoid system.

Caryophyllene is easily recognisable by its peppery, pepper-like aroma and taste. Not surprisingly, because of this aroma and taste, caryophyllene is also found in black pepper, oregano, cloves, basil and rosemary.

  • Aroma: woody, spicy with a hint of pepper and cloves
  • Benefits: activates the cannabinoid receptor CB2
  • Fun fact: also found in black pepper, cloves and cinnamon.


Linalool is most commonly associated with lavender, but it is also an important terpene in many cannabis strains. As you would expect from a lavender-based terpene, it tends to give off a floral aroma. Surprisingly, however, it tends to promote a hint of spice.

Linalool is believed to reduce stress and could be the main source of lavender's stress-relieving properties as well. In addition, it is thought to serve as a terpene that supports the immune system. Finally, linalool may promote more restful sleep during occasional periods of insomnia.

  • Aroma: floral with a hint of spices and lavender
  • Benefits: improves moodantimicrobial, immune system supportivereduces stress.
  • Fun fact: it is also found in lavender.


Pinene is aptly named for its smell: when you smell this terpene, you will immediately recognise a familiar odour: pine. There are two types of pinene, known as alpha-pinene and beta-pinene. Generally, alpha-pinene is the terpene that is discussed when examining cannabis.

Pinene is thought to contribute to alertness and mental acuity. In addition to cannabis, pinene is also found in pine trees, pine needles, rosemary, dill, basil, parsley and orange peels.

  • Aroma: pine
  • Benefits: promotes alertness and memory retention.
  • Fun facts: also found in orange peels, conifers, pine needles, rosemary, dill, basil, and parsley.


Another aptly named terpene, limonene, gives off the unmistakable aroma of citrus fruits. It is therefore not surprising that limonene is often used as an ingredient in food flavourings and cleaning products. It is also often used in skin care products to improve absorption through the epidermis.

In cannabis, limonene is thought to act as a stress reliever and mood enhancer. In addition to cannabis, limonene is found in oranges, rosemary, juniper, mint and a variety of fruit peels.

  • Aroma: citrus
  • Benefits: improves moodrelieves stress.
  • Fun facts: responsible for the scent of orange, also found in fruit peels, rosemary, juniper and mint.

Terpenes are just as important as cannabinoids

Cannabinoids may get all the attention, and understandably so; after all, they are unique to cannabis and hemp plants. However, without terpenes, cannabinoids would be far less effective, not to mention much less flavourful. Terpenes are the faithful companions of cannabinoids, but they are far from being a background character. These 5 terpenes are among the best known, but there are hundreds more in cannabis and countless other plants around the world. The possibilities of terpenes are endless.

Written by:
Carlos Vera

Carlos Vera

CEO & Founder

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