HHC 101: What is HHC?

HHC 101: What is HHC?

Hexahydrocannabinol (HHC) is a rare hemp-based cannabinoid that has recently surfaced as a prominent new addition to the cannabis market. HHC is naturally occurring but in amounts so small that it doesn’t provide for efficient or cost-effective extraction. Keep reading to learn more about HHC and answer some key questions:


  • What is HHC?
  • How is HHC created?
  • Is HHC legal?
  • What are the benefits of HHC?
  • How do you determine quality HHC?
  • Where to buy HHC?

What is HHC?

As far as cannabinoids go, HHC appears to fall somewhere between delta-8 and delta-9 THC in potency. In most cases, HHC is derived from hemp rather than cannabis. Both plants are considered cannabis but have different legal restrictions. 

Products containing HHC are gaining popularity and can be found in multiple methods of consumption. At Hi On Nature, we offer three different ways to enjoy HHC:

It’s worth noting that we only choose the highest quality cannabinoids and are committed to providing customers with premium, compliant, feel-good products. We use our products too. 

How is HHC Created?

HHC may be new to cannabis consumers, but it was actually discovered by chemist Roger Adams in the mid-1940s. Adams created HHC by adding hydrogen to the delta-9 molecule and altering its physical structure, thus changing how it interacts with cannabinoid receptors in the body.   

This process, called hydrogenation, modifies the structure of delta-9 by replacing a double bond with two hydrogen atoms. The process requires a metal catalyst like palladium on carbon, platinum on carbon, or Raney nickel. Combustion is a serious risk, which is why the process should only be conducted in a professional laboratory. The substance then goes through a thorough filtration process to remove any foreign materials. 

The result is improved stability, which means that HHC has a longer shelf life and can handle harsher heat conditions without deteriorating quality, known as “thermo-oxidative breakdown.” 

Hydrogenation is not unique to cannabis. This same process is used to convert butter into margarine and improve the shelf-stability of other foods. Hydrogenated or partially-hydrogenated oils are commonly found in commercial baked goods, frozen pizza, microwavable popcorn, non-dairy coffee creamer, and other foods that are not immediately perishable. 

Is HHC Legal for Sale and Consumption? 

Adams originally applied the technique of hydrogenation to delta-9 derived from marijuana. Since the 2018 Farm Bill came into effect, legalizing hemp crops containing less than 0.3% delta-9, many manufacturers are applying the hydrogenation of cannabinoids to CBD and delta-8. 

Producing HHC from hemp-derived cannabinoids like CBD or delta-8 places HHC under the umbrella of the 2018 Farm Bill. Just like delta-8, there are some individual states that do not allow HHC sales because it is new and there is not enough research to satisfy their cannabis governing bodies.  

There are no laws that specifically mention HHC. There are many that believe, since HHC is not a THC, that it may be more regulatorily friendly compared to delta-8. However, it's important to remember that regulations are constantly changing.

What are the Benefits of HHC?

Cannabis consumers looking for a legal means of achieving an experience similar to THC are finding HHC to be a good option. As science catches up with the cannabis revolution, manufacturers have seen a rise in demand for THC isomer-variants like HHC, delta-8, and delta-10. 

Every individual body reacts differently to cannabinoids, so no two experiences are exactly the same. Anecdotally, many consumers report more of a relaxed feeling than a stimulated one with HHS. Others describe HHS use as a mild high with minor muscle pain relief. The amount you use will also impact the benefits of HHC that you feel. 

Will HHC Get Me High?

Many users report a euphoric feeling that falls somewhere in between the levels of delta-8 and delta-9. The length of the feeling is also reported to be longer than delta-8 and shorter than delta-9.  

Interestingly, when cannabinoids are hydrogenated to create HHC, the result is a mix of active and inactive molecules. Active HHC is referred to as HHCr and binds well with receptors in the body. Inactive receptors (HHCs) do not have the same affinity but may still be beneficial. 

This mix may be part of the reason HHC does not stimulate a potent high like THC. There is currently no way for manufacturers to separate high-potency and low potency HHC from one another. Commercial HHC is a mix of the two. The key to creating quality HHC seems to hinge on starting the process with high-quality cannabinoids.  

How Do You Determine Quality HHC? 

Transparency and traceability are key indicators of a quality product and reputable brand. Regardless of your chosen method of consumption, your HHC product should have third-party laboratory testing results. These are commonly referred to as COAs (Certificate of Analysis) and are more reliable than in-house testing documents which can be easily altered. 

At HI On Nature, we provide third-party results from a multi-accredited laboratory on each of our cannabis products. You can always find our most current COAs listed on the website or scan the QR code on your individual product. Our testing includes a list of all cannabinoids found in the product and even breaks down the ratio of HHCr to HHCs.

Where Can I Buy HHC?

Unlike other cannabis companies, we specialize in novel cannabinoids like HHC. When you purchase from Hi On Nature, you can be confident that the products you receive are meticulously tested for safety and quality. 

As an added bonus to your purchasing satisfaction, we highly value minimizing our environmental impact and pride ourselves on sustainable packaging. 

Though many dispensaries have begun to carry HHC, you can conveniently buy HHC on our website from the comfort of your home. We look forward to hearing how the benefits of HHC contribute to your natural wellbeing.
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