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Kratom extracts have been in use for almost as long as kratom leaves have been harvested and used for things like energy, relaxation, mood enhancement, and focus. 

Extracts are a great way to strengthen the effects of kratom, even with a smaller serving size. Because the alkaloid concentration is stronger in a kratom extract than in loose-leaf kratom, you get more kick while taking less of the substance. That said, you have to be careful with kratom extracts because they are so much stronger than other kratom products!

Historically, there have been many ways to turn the leaves of the Mitragyna speciosa tree into a useful botanical substance, including: 

  • Drying and pulverizing the leaves into a powder 
  • Brewing loose-leaf kratom into teas and drinks
  • Taking kratom in capsule or kratom gummy form

Today, you can buy kratom in extract or non-extract form, depending on your preferences. There are many different types of kratom on the market, ranging from capsules and liquid kratom to powders and pastes. 

Whether you are an experienced kratom user or someone new to kratom, it’s worth taking a closer look at what extracts are and how they work. You can also learn a lot by looking into the companies that make your kratom products so that you know they’re a reputable company.

The History of Botanical Extracts

The History of Botanical Extracts

At its core, kratom extract is just one of the numerous botanical extracts available on the market today. But botanical extracts aren’t anything new, as people have been creating extracts from plants for millennia.

Just take a look at the use of botanical extracts in ancient Rome. There is evidence of people using specific extracts to help with aches and fevers. Other extracts have been used to protect people’s skin from sun damage, keep insects out of crops, dye clothing, and support various systems in the body.

Historically, kratom extracts were typically made with a combination of hot water and evaporation. This led to a serum rich in alkaloid content that could be saved for later. But the concentrations of those extracts were somewhat limited, and they didn’t always last as long as people wanted. This led to the development of more modern kratom extraction methods.

Kratom extracts are used for focus, feelings of well-being, energy, motivation, and relaxation. Let’s look at the ways that kratom can be extracted so that we understand how these results can be obtained. 

Methods of Kratom Extraction

Methods of Kratom Extraction

There are several different methods of extracting kratom, including kratom botanicals. Most methods used to create kratom extracts are the same used to extract other materials. The type of extraction method may affect the alkaloid concentration. 

Maceration, Infusion, Percolation, And Decoction

Of the various kratom extraction methods, this one is the simplest. It requires water and a solvent, as well as filtering. After the filtering, it delivers a usable extract. The final product has more oil-soluble compounds than some of the other extraction methods. However, it isn’t quite as stable. If you see mention of the “Red Bubble Method,” this is the method used to manufacture those kratom extracts.

How it works: When freezing liquids like water or kratom tea, the outside portion begins solidifying first as it contacts the coldest temperatures. As freezing progresses inward, impurities and compounds present in the liquid are expelled and concentrated towards the center. For regular water, this results in an opaque core containing accumulated contaminants like minerals and chemicals. With kratom tea, the freezing process pushes the plant’s pigments and molecular compounds inward, creating a reddish center. 

While some report this technique effectively concentrates kratom’s desired compounds, its efficacy remains debated among users.

Microwave-assisted Extraction (MAE)

Given the name, it is unsurprising that this method relies on microwaves. But these aren’t the types of microwaves the average person can produce (safely) at home. The MAE method requires more advanced processing equipment. 

Microwaves are used to heat a solvent that is in contact with a sample material. The microwave energy causes the solvent to get really hot, really fast. This extreme heat makes it easier for compounds from the sample to dissolve into the solvent, separating them from the original sample material. The whole extraction happens in a sealed container, allowing the solvent to get super hot without evaporating. 

This rapid, intense heating extracts compounds from the sample much faster than traditional extraction methods that use lower temperatures over longer times. 

Solid Phase Microextraction (SPME)

This is among the newer extraction methods available. It involves an integrated process that combines extraction, introduction, and concentration. That combination makes it highly efficient, leading to environmental sustainability in the production of kratom extracts.

To make a kratom extract using solid-phase microextraction (SPME), manufacturers would first prepare a kratom tea by soaking kratom powder in hot water. An SPME device (made from a small extractive coating on a solid support) would then be exposed to the kratom tea solution, allowing the alkaloid compounds to transfer from the tea and become concentrated on the SPME coating over time. 

After removing the SPME device from the tea, the coating containing the pre-concentrated kratom compounds could be rinsed with a solvent. This would collect a more concentrated kratom extract, which means avoiding the need for large solvent volumes typically used in traditional extraction methods.

Supercritical Fluid Extraction (SFE)

To understand this extraction method, you need to know that a supercritical substance is both a gas and a liquid; it has the properties of both. Carbon dioxide (CO2) is one common supercritical substance. As a bonus, it is also widely available and has incredibly low toxicity. As such, CO2 is commonly used to create kratom extracts. Many versions of SFE also include methanol or ethanol. This boosts efficiency by boosting the solubility of the supercritical CO2.

Supercritical fluid extraction (SFE) is similar to pressurized liquid extraction but uses a supercritical fluid like carbon dioxide instead of liquid solvents. 

For making a kratom extract, the kratom powder would first be loaded into an extraction vessel. Then supercritical carbon dioxide would be pumped through the vessel at high pressure to extract compounds from the kratom into the carbon dioxide fluid. 

An advantage is the extract automatically gets concentrated when the carbon dioxide returns to gas form after extraction. SFE can be selective by adjusting the temperature and/or the pressure. However, it requires expensive equipment. Adding modifiers like solvents may help extract more compounds from the kratom powder if carbon dioxide alone doesn’t extract everything desired.

Know what kratom extracts you want

Understanding Concentrations Of Kratom Extracts

When you look at a kratom extract, you may notice a note on its concentration. This specifically measures the concentration of Mitragynine, the principal active alkaloid that leads to the desired effects in kratom

That being said, there are also other kratom alkaloids that can enhance the effects. Most users agree that opting for a kratom product with all of these alkaloids will lead to a more positive kratom experience. That being said, many users prefer products with just a single alkaloid content instead of the full-spectrum kratom extract.

You can tell whether a kratom extract just has Mitragynine or also has other extracts based on how it is labeled. A full-spectrum kratom extract will also contain other alkaloids, while a Mitragynine isolate will only contain that alkaloid. But in either case, the percentage of alkaloid content listed on the product typically refers to the concentration of Mitragynine.

Sometimes, you may also see the concentration of an extract labeled with a ratio, like 2:1 or 3:1. This refers to the ratio of the concentration of the extract compared to a kratom powder.

What’s The Difference Between Kratom Extract And Kratom Powder?

Another common question related to extracts is how they compare to kratom powder or even capsules or other forms. Of these, the most important comparison is with kratom powder, as you can actually find extracts in various forms, including capsules and liquids. This includes kratom shots.

It can be helpful to understand the difference between the kratom extract and kratom powder. Whether you are a new or experienced kratom user, it is worth refreshing your memory before choosing premium kratom.

How Kratom Powders Are Made

The biggest difference between kratom powders and kratom extracts is the way they are made. We have already covered various methods of producing the kratom extract. To make traditional kratom powder, you wait until the plant matures. Then, you dry the kratom leaves of the adult plant. Finally, you crush them until they become a fine powder. Kratom powders will include the entire plant.

Making extracts requires more equipment, time, and effort.

Differences In Concentration

Although there are exceptions, kratom extract tends to be more concentrated than powder. This comes from the fact that you will find more kratom alkaloids in the concentrate. That higher concentration also means kratom extracts tend to appear darker than a kratom powder.

Because the extract is more concentrated, you will need to consume less of it to experience the same effects as with the powder. And as always with kratom, beginners should start with a smaller concentration. This makes kratom extract a better choice for seasoned kratom users.

If you want to know exactly how much kratom to consume and are curious about its nutritional value, familiarize yourself with kratom nutrition facts. This information can guide beginners and seasoned users alike in making informed decisions about their kratom intake, ensuring a safer and more effective experience.

Choosing Kratom Extract

You can find a variety of kratom extracts in our selection at MIT45. No matter where you shop, the key is to always choose kratom from a reputable kratom vendor. Look for a retailer that is part of the American Kratom Association (AKA), as this indicates they have a strong reputation, including quality control measures to deliver the best quality kratom. All of our kratom products are made from high-quality kratom that has been carefully chosen, and we are proud to be part of the AKA.

If you need help choosing any of your kratom products, including extracts, reach out to our MIT45 team. We are happy to assist you, putting our decades of kratom experience to good use. From liquid kratom extract to kratom capsules, we have numerous, high-quality kratom options to suit your tastes.


Jason Croxford

With 15 years of marketing experience under his belt, Jason is clearly a powerhouse. Lately, he’s turned that energy toward holistic health and biohacking to maximize his health and lengthen his lifespan. Jason is breathwork-certified and is working towards his 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training certification.


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