Effects of thermal processing on cannabidiol degradation in cannabidiol-infused pomegranate juice and evaluation of its antioxidant property


  • Vanida Osiripun Faculty of Food Technology, College of Agricultural Innovation and Food Technology, Rangsit University, Pathum Thani 12000, Thailand
  • Sasirindara Labua Faculty of Food Technology, College of Agricultural Innovation and Food Technology, Rangsit University, Pathum Thani 12000, Thailand


antioxidant, cannabidiol (CBD), pasteurization, pomegranate juice, sterilization, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)


Cannabidiol (CBD) is an active phytocannabinoid widely used in functional foods as well as nutraceutical and medicinal products.  In this study, the effects of pasteurization and sterilization on the change of cannabidiol and total phenolic content, including antioxidant capacity in pomegranate juice containing 3.5 and 7.0 mg/L CBD, were evaluated.  The CBD solution was prepared in absolute ethanol and added to pomegranate juice to obtain a final CBD concentration of not more than 1.41 mg/package. CBD and its degradation products; Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabinol (CBN), after heat treatment were measured using the HPLC-DAD method.  After heat treatment, total phenolic content of the juices significantly increased except for the juice containing 7.0 mg/L corresponding to an increase of antioxidant capacity.  The results showed that thermal processing decreased CBD content.  The higher the temperature, the lower the CBD content remained.  Pasteurized pomegranate juice containing 3.5 and 7.0 mg/L CBD decreased by roughly 25%, but the sterilized juice decreased by 85.7% and 92% respectively. In consideration of CBN, a less psychoactive cannabinoid compound was not detected after pasteurization and sterilization.  Sterilization increased the considerable THC content in pomegranate juice containing 7.0 mg/L CBD more than that containing 3.0 mg/L CBD.  Conversely, only the pomegranate juice which contained 7.0 mg/L of CBD had a slight rise in THC content due to pasteurization.  It could be concluded that thermal processing by sterilization had potential effects on CBD degradation. However, the formation of THC did not exceed 1.6 mg/package as specified in the Notification of the Ministry of Public Health No. 427 B.E. 2564 (2021), Thailand.


Abountiolas, M., & Nunes, C. N. (2017). Polyphenols, ascorbic acid and antioxidant capacity of commercial nutritional drinks, fruit juices, smoothies, and teas. International Journal of Food Science and Technology, 53(1), 188-198. https://doi.org/10.1111/ijfs.13573

Azman, N. F. I. N., Azlan, A., Khoo, H. E., &. Razman, M. R. (2019). Antioxidant properties of fresh and frozen peels of Citrus species. Current Research in Nutrition and Food Science, 7(2), 331-339. https://doi.org/10.12944/CRNFSJ.7.2.03

Beitzke, B., & Pate, D. W. (2021). A broader view on deriving a reference dose for THC traces in foods. Critical Review in Toxicology, 51(8), 695-722. https://doi.org/10.1080/10408444.2021.2008867

Benjamin, O., & Gamrasni, D. (2020). Microbial, nutritional, and organoleptic quality of pomegranate juice following high-pressure homogenization and low-temperature pasteurization. Journal of Food Science, 85(3), 592-599. https://doi.org/10.1111/1750-3841.15032

Cao, C., Li, Y., Liu, H., Bai, G., Mayl, J., Lin, X., ... & Cai, J. (2014). The potential therapeutic effects of THC on Alzheimer’s disease. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 42(3), 973-84. https://doi.org/10.3233/JAD-140093

Chayasirisobhon, S. (2019). Cannabis and neuropsychiatric disorders: An update review. Acta Neurologica Tawanica, 28(2), 27-29.

Chen, D., Xi, H., Guo, X., Qin, Z., Pang, X., Hu, X., ... & Wu, J. (2013). Comparative study of quality of cloudy pomegranate juice treated by high hydrostatic pressure and high temperature short time. Innovative Food Science and Emerging Technologies, 19, 85-94. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ifset.2013.03.003

Chen, C., & Pan, Z. (2021). Cannabidiol and terpenes from hemp – ingredients for future foods and processing technologies. Journal of Future Foods, 1(2), 113-127. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jfutfo.2022.01.001

Fang, Z., Zhang, Y., Lü, Y., Ma, G., Chen, J., Liu, D., & Ye, X. (2009). Phenolic compounds and antioxidant capacities of bayberry juices. Food Chemistry,113(4), 884-888. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2008.07.102

Farahmand, M., Golmakani, M. T., Mesbahi, G., & Farahnaky, A. (2016). Investigating the effects of large-scale processing on phytochemicals and antioxidant activity of pomegranate juice. Journal of Food Processing and Preservation, 41(2), 1-11. https://doi.org/10.1111/jfpp.12792

Featherstone, S. (2016). Canning of juices, fruit drinks, and water. In Woodhead Publishing Series in Food Science, Technology and Nutrition. A complete Course in Canning and Related Process (14th ed.), 135-168. DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-85709-679-1.00003-9

Fraguas-Sánchez, A. I., Fernández-Carballido, A., Martin-Sabroso, C., & Torres-Suárez, A. I. (2020). Stability characteristics of cannabidiol for the design of pharmacological, biochemical, and pharmaceutical studies. Journal of Chromatography B, 1150, 122188. DOI: 10.1016/j.jchromb.2020.122188

Gahler, S., Otto, K., & Böhm, V. (2003). Alteration of Vitamin C, total phenolics, and antioxidant capacity as affected by processing tomatoes to different products. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 51(27), 7962-7968. https://doi.org/10.1021/jf034743q

Gaoni, Y., & Mechoulam, R. (1966). Hashish-VII: The isomerization of cannabidiol to tetrahydrocannabinols. Tetrahedron, 22(4), 1481-1488. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0040-4020(01)99446-3

Gliménez-Bastida, J. A., Ávila-Gálvez, M. A., Espín, J. C., & González-Sarŕias, A. (2021). Evidence for health properties of pomegranate juices and extracts beyond nutrition: A critical systematic review of human studies. Trend in Food Science and Technology, 114, 410-423. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tifs.2021.06.014

Golombek, P., Müller, M., Barthlott, I., Sproll, C., & Lachenmeier, D. W. (2020). Conversion of cannabidiol (CBD) into psychotropic cannabinoids including tetrahydrocannabinol (THC): A controversy in the scientific literature. Toxics, 8(2), 41. https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics8020041

Gözlekci, S., Saracoğlu, O., Onursal, E., & Özgen, M. (2011). Total phenolic distribution of juice, peel, and seed extracts of four pomegranate cultivars. Pharmacognosy Magazine, 7(26), 161-164. DOI: 10.4103/0973-1296.80681

Guofang, X., Xiaoyan, X., Xiaoli, Z., Yongling, L., & Zhibing, Z. (2019). Changes in phenolic profiles and antioxidant activity in rabbiteye blueberries during ripening. International Journal of Food Properties, 22(1), 320-329. https://doi.org/10.1080/10942912.2019.1580718

Hacke, A. C. M., Lima, D., de Costa, F., Deshmukh, K., Li, N., Chow, A. M., ... & Kerman, K. (2019). Probing the antioxidant activity of 9-tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol in Cannabis sativa extracts. Analyst, 144, 4952-4961. https://doi.org/10.1039/C9AN00890J

Hampson, A. J., Grimaldi, M., Axelrod, J., & Wink, D. (1998). Cannabidiol and (-)9-tetrahydrocannabinol are

neuroprotective antioxidants. Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences, 95(14), 8268-8273. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.95.14.8268

High Yield Insight. (2019). The CBD consumer experience: part one. online national survey. Retrieved April 16, 2022, from https://www.highyieldinsights.com/cbdconsumersignup

Hua, Z., Yi-Fei, Y., & Zhi-qin, Z. (2018). Phenolic and flavonoid contents of mandarin (Citrus reticulata blanco) fruit tissues and their antioxidant capacity as evaluated by DPPH and ABTS methods. Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 17(1), 256-263. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2095-3119(17)61664-2

Huestis, M. A., Solimini, R., Pichini, S., Pacifici, R., Carlier, J., & Busardò, F. P. (2019). Cannabidiol adverse effects and toxicity. Current Neuropharmacology, 17(10), 974-989. https://doi.org/10.2174/1570159x17666190603171901

Iftikhar, A., Zafar, U., Ahmed, W., Shabbir, M. A., Sameen, A., Sahar, A., ... & Aadil, R. M. (2021). Applications of Cannabis Sativa L. in Food and Its Therapeutic Potential: From a Prohibited Drug to a Nutritional Supplement. Molecules, 26(24), 7699. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26247699

Jaidee, W., Siridechakorn, I., Nessopa, S., Wisuitiprot, V., Chaiwangrach, N., Ingkaninan, K., & Waranuch, N. (2022). Kinetics of CBD, 9-THC degradation and cannabinol formation in cannabis resin at various temperature and pH conditions. Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research, 7(4), 537-547. https://doi.org/10.1089/can.2021.0004

Kanabus, J., Bryla, M., Roszko, M., Modrzewska, M., & Pierzgalski, A. (2021). Cannabinoids-characteristics and potential for use in food production. Molecules, 26(21), 6723. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26216723

Kandylis, P., & Kokkinomagoulos, E. (2020). Food applications and potential health benefits of pomegranate and its derivatives. Foods, 9(2), 122. DOI: 10.3390/foods9020122

King, J. W. (2019). The relationship between cannabis/hemp uses in foods and processing methodology. Current Opinion in Food Science, 28, 32-40. DOI: 10.1016/j.cofs.2019.04.007

Kim, D. O., Lee, K. W., Lee, H. J., & Lee, C. Y. (2002). Vitamin C Equivalent Antioxidant Capacity (VCEAC) of phenolic phytochemical. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 50(13), 3713-3717. https://doi.org/10.1021/jf020071c

Kong, T. Y., Hasnan, N. Z. N., Nur Diyana, N., Nurin-Zulkifli, I. M., Basha, R. K., Abdul Ghani, N. H., & Aziz, N. A. (2020). Effect of different pasteurization temperature on physicochemical properties, bioactive compounds, antioxidant activity and microbiological qualities of reconstituted pomegranate juice (RPJ). Food Research, 4(6), 157-164. https://doi.org/10.26656/fr.2017.4(S6).057

Kosović, E., Sýkora, D., & Kuchař, M. (2021). Stability study of cannabidiol in the form of solid powder and sunflower oil solution. Pharmaceutics, 13(3), 412. https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics13030412

Lachenmeier, D. W., Habel, S., Fischer, B., Herbi, F., Zerbe, Y., Bock, V., ... & Sproll, C. (2019). Are adverse effects of cannabidiol (CBD) products caused by tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) contamination?. F1000Research, 8, 1394. DOI: 10.12688/f1000research.19931.5

Legua, P., Forner-Giner, M. A., Nuncio-Jáuregui, N., & Hernández, F. (2016). Polyphenolic compounds, anthocyanins, and antioxidant activity of nineteen pomegranate fruits: A rich source of bioactive compounds. Journal of Functional Foods, 23, 628-636. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jff.2016.01.043

Lim, Y. J., & Eom, S. H. (2022). The different contributors to antioxidant activity in thermal dried flesh and peel of astringent persimmon fruit. Antioxidants, 11(3), 597. https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox11030597

Mejia, N. M., Castro, J. P., Ocampo, Y. C., Salas, R. D., Delporte, C. L., & Franco, L. A. (2020). Evaluation of antioxidant potential and total phenolic content of exotic fruits grown in Colombia. Journal of Applied Pharmaceutical Science, 10(09), 50-58. DOI: 10.7324/JAPS.2020.10906

Merrick, J., Lane, B., Sebree, T., Yaksh, T., O´Neill, C., & Banks, S. L. (2016). Identification of psychoactive degradants of cannabidiol in simulated gastric and physiological fluid. Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research, 1(1), 102-112. https://doi.org/10.1089/can.2015.0004

Mena, P., Vegara, S., Martí, N., García-Viguera, C., Saura, D., & Valero, M. (2013). Changes on indigenous microbiota, colour, bioactive compounds and antioxidant activity of pasteurized pomegranate juice. Food Chemistry, 141(3), 2122-2129. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2013.04.118

Messina, F., Rosati, O., Curini, M., & Marcotullio, M.C. (2015). Cannabis and bioactive cannabinoids. Studies in Natural Products Chemistry, 45, 17-57. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-444-63473-3.00002-2

Murtaza, A., Iqbal, A., Marszałek, K., Iqbal, M. A., Waseem Ali, S., Xu, X., ... & Hu, W. (2020). Enzymatic, phyto-, and physicochemical evaluation of apple juice under high-pressure carbon dioxide and thermal processing. Foods, 9(2), 243. DOI: 10.3390/foods9020243

Musarra, M., Jirillo, R., Rapa, M., & Vinci, G. (2019). Canapa sativa L. and Moringa oleifera as naturally functional beverages: Innovative trends. Natural Beverage, 13, 243-265. DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-12-816689-5.00009-2

Olvera-Sandoval, C., Fabela-Illescas, H. E., Fernández-Martínez, E., Ortiz-Rodríguez, M. A., Cariño-Cortés, R., Ariza-Ortega, J. A., ... & Betanzos-Cabrera, G. (2022). Potential mechanisms of the improvement of glucose homeostasis in type 2 diabetes by pomegranate juice. Antioxidants, 11(3), 553. DOI: 10.3390/antiox11030553

Peng, J., Fan, M., An, C., Ni, F., Huang, W., & Luo, J. (2022). A narrative review of molecular mechanism and therapeutic effect of cannabidiol (CBD). Basic and Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, 130(4), 439-456. DOI: 10.1111/bcpt.13710

Pisanti, S., Malfitano, A. M., Ciaglia, E., Lamberti, A., Ranieri, R., Cuomo, G., ... & Bifulco, M. (2017). State of the art and new challenges for therapeutic applications. Pharmacology & Therapeutics, 175, 133-150. https//doi.org/10.1016/j.pharmthera.2017.02.041

Pisciottano, I. D. M., Guadagnuolo, G., Soprano, V., Esposito, M., & Gallo, P. (2021). A survey of 9-THC and relevant cannabinoids in products from the Italian market: A study by LC-MS/MS of food, beverages, and feed. Food Chemistry, 346, 128898. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2020.128898

Rasera, G. B., Ohara, A., & Soares de Castro, R. J. (2021). Innovative and emerging applications of cannabis in food and beverage products: From an illicit drug to a potential ingredient for health promotion. Trend in Food Science and Technology, 115, 31-41. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tifs.2021.06.035

Rouweler, J. (2015). Heat process value F (2nd ed.) for several commercial pasteurization and sterilization processes: Overview, uses, and restrictions. Retrieved August 16, 2021, from https://www.terrafoodtech.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/terra-food-tech-heat-process-values-pasteurization-sterilization.pdf

Russo, E., & Guy, G. W. (2006). A tale of two cannabinoids: The therapeutic rationale for combining tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol. Medical Hypothesis, 66(2), 243-246. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mehy.2005.08.026

Ryan, M. (2020). Cannabidiol in epilepsy: The indications and beyond. The Mental Health Clinician, 10(6), 317-325. https://doi.org/10.9740/mhc.2020.11.317

Su, D., Wang, Z., Dong, L., Huang, F., Zhang, R., Jia, X., ... & Zhang, M. (2019). Impact of thermal processing and storage temperature on the phenolic profile and antioxidant activity of different varieties of lychee juice. LWT – Food Science and Technology, 116, 108578. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.lwt.2019.108578

Tarantino, A., Difonzo, G., Disciglio, G., Frabboni, L., Paradiso, V. M., Gambacorta, G., & Caponio, F. (2021). Fresh pomegranate juices from cultivars and local ecotypes grown in southeastern Italy: comparison of physicochemical properties, antioxidant activity and bioactive compounds. Journal of The Science of Food and Agriculture, 102(3), 1185-1192. https://doi.org/10.1002/jsfa.11456

Triguerous, L., Wojdylo, A., & Sendra, E. (2014). Antioxidant activity and interactions protein-polyphenol in a pomegranate (Puncica granatum L.) yogurt. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 62(27), 6417-6425. https://doi.org/10.1021/jf501503h

Vaclavik, L., Benes, F., Fenclova, M., Hricko, J., Krmela, A., Svobodova, V., ... & Mastovska, K. (2019). Quantitation of cannabinoids in cannabis dried plant materials, concentrates, and oil using liquid chromatography-diode array detection technique with optional mass spectrometric detection: single-laboratory validation study, first action 2018.11. Journal of AOAC International, 102(6), 1822-1833. https://doi.org/10.5740/jaoacint.18-0426

Van Vliet, S. A. M., Vanwersch, R. A. P., Jongsma, M. J., Olivier, B., & Philippens, I, H. (2008). Therapeutic effects of 9-THC and modafinil in a marmoset Parkinson model. European Neuropsychopharmacology, 18(5), 383-389. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.euroneuro.2007.11.003

Vučić, V., Grabež, M., Trchounian, A., & Arsić, A. (2019). Composition and potential health benefits of pomegranate: A review. Current Pharmaceutical Design, 25(16), 1817-1827. DOI: 10.2174/1381612825666190708183941

World Health Organization. (2018). WHO technical report series 1013. Retrieved April 16, 2022, from https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/279948/9789241210225-eng.pdf

Zaouay, F., Mena, P., Garcia-Viguera, C., & Mars, M. (2012). Antioxidant activity and physico-chemical properties of Tunisian grown pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) cultivars. Industrial Crops and Products, 40, 81-89. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.indcrop.2012.02.045




How to Cite

Osiripun, V., & Labua, S. (2023). Effects of thermal processing on cannabidiol degradation in cannabidiol-infused pomegranate juice and evaluation of its antioxidant property. Journal of Current Science and Technology, 13(1), 107–117. Retrieved from https://ph04.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/JCST/article/view/209



Research Article