There is much controversy concerning the levels of the psychoactive chemical thujone in Absinthe and so many individuals want to know how to measure thujone levels in Absinthe that they’ve made in your own home. It is not possible this at home if you don’t have the proper equipment and know what you do. Thujone levels may be measured by solid phase extraction and gas chromatography.
For individuals who don’t know, thujone is a substance found in the herb common wormwood (Artemisia Absinthium) and in earlier times was thought to be psychoactive like THC in the drug cannabis. In large doses it was believed to have psychedelic effects, to result in convulsions, insanity, brain damage, and ultimately death. The alleged outcomes of thujone together with the proven fact that Absinthe was an intoxicant, being such a strong liquor, were enough for the prohibition movements in France, the United States as well as other countries to steer governments to ban Absinthe.
Recently, research has shown that thujone will have to be consumed in large quantities to cause any harmful unwanted effects, so Absinthe with 10mg of thujone per liter or less was legalized in the European Union www.makecarbonatedwater.com. Many individuals in the USA were disappointed that legalization didn’t come about simultaneously in the United States. The United States needed that alcohol-based drinks needs to be “thujone free”.
Lux and Fire Erowid contacted the two FDA and the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) to find clarification on the laws all around the Green Fairy and thujone. The FDA used a rather outdated indicator test to test for the existence of thujone, not correct analytical chemistry. The TTB reported that wormwood products should be thujone free which meant a lot less than the limit of detection – 10 ppm (parts per million).
Ted Breaux, an Absinthe distiller, examined his collectibles, antique vintage bottles of Absinthe, for thujone levels by using gas chromatography and was amazed at their low thujone levels. It was always thought that vintage pre ban Absinthe covered 260-350mg of thujone per liter, Breaux discovered that the highest reading from the vintage bottles was 6mg per liter – a very small amount. Also, he tested the Absinthes of his Jade collection in which he’d put a “full measure” of wormwood, and found that after distillation these also contained only tiny quantities of thujone.
Absinthe as well as the United States 2007
Breaux as well as the company Veridian produced an Absinthe called “Lucid” and were able to persuade the FDA and TTB that it contained lower than 10 ppm of thujone. Lucid started sale in the US in 2007 and was soon followed by a few other brands of Absinthe. Americans are now able to enjoy the taste of Absinthe both at home and in bars through the entire US.
Does Absinthe Have Any Effects?
The thujone content in Absinthe isn’t high enough to cause hallucinations, but Absinthe is an extremely strong alcoholic liquor, approximately 75% abv. It’s not meant to be ingested straight or on the rocks. The proper way to serve Absinthe is to pour a shot in an Absinthe glass and thin down with iced water poured over a cube of sugar.
It is easy to get drunk fairly swiftly when drinking Absinthe simply because of its strength, however the drunkenness related to Absinthe drinking is extremely not the same as getting drunk on beer, wine or cider. A number of the herbs in Absinthe acts as a sedative but some as a stimulant so you experience a “clear headed” or “lucid” drunkenness – an odd experience!
Absinthe Kits and Thujone Quantities
It isn’t essential to know how to measure thujone levels in Absinthe if you use kits containing quality essences, like those from AbsintheKit.com, where thujone levels in the essences are actually measured for you. These essences are really easy to use web site. They are already distilled, you just have to mix with Everclear or vodka to produce your very own real wormwood Absinthe.