Cultivation: Hashish is produced practically everywhere in and around Afghanistan. The best kinds of Hash originate from the Northern provinces between Hindu Kush and the Russian border (Balkh, Mazar-i-Sharif). As tourist in Afghanistan it will be very difficult to be allowed to see Cannabis-Fields or Hash Production.
Production: The plants which are used for Hash production are very small and bushy Indicas. In Afghanistan Hashish is pressed by hand under addition of a small quantity of tea or water. The Hashish is worked on until it becomes highly elastic and has a strong aromatic smell. In Afghanistan the product is stored in the form of Hash-Balls (because a round ball has the less contact with air), however, before being shipped, the Hash is pressed in 100g slabs. Good qualities of Afghani are signed with the stem of the producing family. Sometimes Hash of this kind is sold as Royal Afghani.
Color: Black on the outside, dark greenish or brown inside. Can sometimes look kind of grayish on the outside when left in contact with the air.
Smell: Spicy to very spicy.
Taste: Very spicy, somewhat harsh on the throat. Afghani can induce lots of coughing in inexperienced users.
Consistency: Soft, can be kneaded very easily.
Effect: Almost narcotic, produces a very physical and stony high.
Potency: Potent, sometimes very potent. It's easy to underestimate the potency of Afghani since the high takes about 5 minutes to reach it's full potential. (1.7%-6.5% THC)
Availability: Quite rare, especially good qualities. Beside Moroccan Hash, Afghani is the most common kind of Hash on the European market. The price is usually higher than Moroccan but quality differs greatly. If I have the choice of Moroccan or Afghani then I would go for the stonier and more narcotic Afghani.
Various: The softest Afghani isn't always the best - coconut or other oils are often added in the originating country. There is also some Hash-Oil which is being produced from Afghani, usually the quality is excellent. Most people I know are bored of Afghani if they have to smoke it for a long time, on the other side there are people who love this stuff. Beware: Turkish Hash is sometimes offered under the name of Red Afghani.
Strain: Charas (India)
Cultivation: Cannabis is cultivated nearly everywhere around India.
Production: In India Hash is produced by carefully rubbing the female buds between the hands. The resin is rolled in Hash-Balls, before shipment it's pressed in the usual slabs.
Color: Black on the outside, dark greenish/brown inside.
Smell: Spicy to very spicy. Distinctive aroma.
Taste: Very spicy, somewhat harsh on the throat but definitively less so than Afghani.
Consistency: Very soft, can be kneaded easily like Afghani. Sometimes quite powdery though always dense.
Effect: Very stony and physical high. Cerebral.
Potency: Potent to very potent. Like Nepali, Charas is almost always good smoke. (10-26% THC)
Availability: Very rare, from time to time very small quantities become available. Most Hash of this kind is imported by private travellers to India. As expected the price is very high, in the range of Nepali. Charas is usually sold as a 'finger', which is a sausage shaped piece of hash.
Strain: Kashmiri (Kashmir/India)
Cultivation: No information available.
Production: Kashmir is the only Moslem country where Hashish is produced by hand like in Nepal and Afghanistan. Usually the producers in Kashmir aren't able to press the slabs decently.
Color: Black on the outside, brown-greenish inside. White lines usually present.
Smell: Very spicy and aromatic.
Taste: Quite an acquired taste, however not harsh on the throat.
Consistency: Somewhat harder than Afghani with less resin content. Natural oils are often added to render the Hash soft.
Effect: Physical and stony high.
Potency: Potent to very potent. (10-12% THC)
Availability: Very rare.
Strain: Lebanese (Lebanon)
Cultivation: The most important Cannabis-Fields are located in the valley of Baalbek. The fields are cultivated on very large scale, many of them using modern machinery. The production is very industrially oriented, tradition is not very involved in the Hash-Business.
Production: The Cannabis-Plants are left on the field until they are nearly dry. By this time they will have acquired a brown-reddish color (some Chlorophyll is destroyed by the UV-Rays of the Sun). Finally the plants are brought in a barn to be dried completely.
Hashish is produced in the same way as in Morocco, basically the buds are carefully rubbed over a fine silk-cloth, the resulting powder can be pressed together. Than finer the mesh used, than better the resulting Hashish.
The Hash-Powder is stored inside 35kg plastic bags, in this form it can be kept for a long time without losing much potency (because the resin glands are still closed).
In the winter months the pressing begins. Hash-Powder is filled in linen or cotton bag and pressed under great pressure. On the surface of the Hashish the structure of the tissue which was used can be clearly seen. Usually the Hash is pressed in slabs of 100g, 200g (usually) or 1000g (1kg).
There is some Hash which is pressed by hand like in Afghanistan, unfortunately it's usually not exported.
Color: There are two kinds of Lebanese-Hash: Yellow Lebanese, which is yellowish and Red Lebanese which is reddish-brown (very similar to standard Morocco in color). The Red-Lebanese is made from riper plants.
Smell: Spicy to very spicy, refreshing smell.
Taste: Very spicy, harsher than Turk or Morocco. Some Lebanese-Hash is harsher than Afghani, especially when smoked in a Bong. Lebanese is quite an acquired taste.
Consistency: Usually the slabs are very thick (about 2-3cm) and not elastic. However when you cut it, you can clearly see that it contains big quantities of resin and that it can be cut easily. Some kinds of Lebanese, like Afghani have the family stem on them. Very good Lebanese can be re-pressed by hand like Afghani due to it's high resin-content.
Effect: Compared to most other Hash varieties the High is quite cerebral, however more stony than Morocco or Turk. Of course, the yellow kind produces a more cerebral high than the red kind (which is riper and contains more CBN than THC).
Potency: Usually not very strong, somewhat stronger than Morocco. However there are also very good varieties of Lebanon which are very strong. As already mentioned the high resin content of the better varieties can be clearly seen and it can be re-pressed by hand. (1.0%-18% THC)
Availability: Quite rare, good qualities are very rare. However Lebanese is the third most common kind of Hash in Europe (after Morocco and Afghani). Unfortunately most of the Lebanese which is sold is quite old and dry, fresh and resinous Lebanese is very rare in the last years. Usually the price-range can be compared to that of Afghani. I noticed that Yellow-Lebanese is somewhat rarer than the red.
Various: I'm told that the best Lebanese-Hash is called Zahret el Kolch. The availability of Lebanese is likely to increase since the crop substitution programs run by the UN have been severely under funded, and farmers are returning to more traditional crops to make a living.
Strain: Manali (India/Himalaya Region)
Production: The Hash is produced by hand like in Afghanistan and Nepal. From what I heard the Hash production is organized by Europeans.
Color: Black on the outside, greenish-brown inside.
Smell: Reminds somewhat of Weed.
Taste: Reminds somewhat of Weed.
Consistency: Hard to very hard (when older).
Effect: Not as physical and stony as the other black kinds.
Potency: Medium to potent.
Availability: Very rare. When available usually in the form of sticks, unfortunately often quite old.
Sonstiges: Pieces of stems and seeds can sometimes be found in the dope. This was tried by ZZ in Amsterdam, and was the most disappointing of the gear we got. High quality varieties are probably available though - watch out for the really old stuff.
Strain: Moroccan (Morocco)
Cultivation: Cannabis is cultivated in the Northern regions, especially in the province of Ketama. In 1992 Morocco cultivated at least 30'000 acres of Cannabis. This produces about 15'000 tons of Hashish, which are exported to Europe (especially Spain, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Switzerland and Italy).
Color: Greenish to brown. Due to the relatively short growing season the plants retain a quite green color at harvest.
Smell: Lightly aromatic, not spicy.
Taste: Compared to other kinds of Hash the taste is very mild. Personally speaking the taste of Morocco is one of my favorites, it's very soft on the throat (especially in good varieties like Pollen or Zero-Zero) and reminds of Weed.
Consistency: Quite variable, however generally quite hard. Usually Morocco is sold in 0,5 - 1,5cm thick slabs. Pollen is less pressed than normal Morocco, ZeroZero is very soft, almost like Afghani.
Effect: Compared to other kinds of Hash it produces a quite cerebral and active high.
Potency: Light to medium, only rarely potent. Even very good Morocco can't be called particularly strong. (0.9%-10% THC)
Availability: Moroccan is the most common kind of Hash on the European market, only recently it became possible for the average consumer to find other kinds of Hash on the street. Morocco is sold under many names: Standard, Melange, Premier, Zero, Zero-Zero, Sputnik, Pollen, Chocolate and probably many others.
Unfortunately these names aren't very useful, dealers sell everything which is slightly better than Standard under a variety of names. Real Pollen is light-brown in color, sold in thick, lightly compressed slabs. When heated it expands much more than other Moroccan's.
I should add that botanically speaking the definition Pollen is completely wrong. Of course the Hash is produced from Female resin glands and not from male pollens (which contain virtually no THC).
Various: Even though the locals will offer you hash at very, very good prices, be very careful. Don't tell them where you're staying, don't let the hotel staff catch you with a spliff. Paranoia is a useful tool when it saves you from a five year prison sentence!!!
Strain: Moroccan Hash Oil.
Cultivation: Moroccan hash oil is made from unpressed resin.
Production(Self instruction): Use the smallest alcohol molecule, methanol, to perform a cold solvent extraction. The resin needs only to be soaked for an hour or two with a stir or three; wash the resin three times with at least a 4:1 ratio of methanol to resin, condensing the methanol driven off by heat from the filtered mixture each time.
Boil down to a 1:1 ratio and after the third wash set fire to it, immediately give this a final methanol wash, fire it again; the flames will subside on their own, if your resin was pure, and your filter papers were fine, and then it will bubble up to the top of your pressure cooker; it is now super-hot (close all the windows) will cool slowly but needs to be poured to easily separate the crust which can be recycled.
Big warnings: methanol will rot your brain and send you blind if you regularly inhale (luckily good hash oil contains none) and methanol fires are deceptively fierce, you need good practical chemistry lab habits. Incidentally, the washed residue looks exactly like hash still, but will not get you stoned at all (guess what happens to that!)
Color: Dark brown as unwarmed solid, yellow and brown on rizla paper.
Smell: Very little, slightly toasted; if it smells strongly of anything, just say no.
Taste: Slightly acrid, not pleasant unless disguised.
Consistency: When frozen will shatter; at room temperature is solid but sticky; will drip from spatula when heated gently, quickly solidifies to sticky solid again.
Effect: Same as the hash you made it from, but will not deteriorate as quickly with time.
Potency: Again, same as the resin you used, though the oil is clearly more concentrated so less equivalent oil is needed than the original hash.
Availability: there's always resin in Morocco, but users need to love it to handle it with total success. This is the combustible that will be used in medical inhalers because it contains at least 75% less vegetable matter.
Strain: Nepalese (Nepal)
Cultivation: There are small Cannabis cultivations everywhere in the Highlands of Nepal.
Production: The resin is collected by carefully rubbing the buds between both hands. Later the collected resin is pressed to homogenous Hash-Balls (Temple Balls). Before shipment these balls are pressed in slabs.
Color: Black on the outside, dark-brown inside.
Smell: The aroma is very spicy, heavy and quite sweet. It is particularly potent if a piece of Hash is broken-up.
Taste: Highly aromatic and sweet, more so than Afghani but still less harsh on the throat.
Consistency: Usually somewhat harder than Afghani but still soft enough to be kneaded at body temperature.
Effect: Very physical and stony high.
Potency: Potent to very potent.(11%-15% THC)
Availability: Very rare.
Sonstiges: The best Hash comes from Nepal. This stuff is simply the best - if it really is Nepalese and not some Afghani sold as Nepalese. Usually Nepalese is very expensive, in Amsterdam the best Hash in many Coffee-Shops is nothing else than Nepalese. Personally I think it's always worth the money, at least if you like the stony high it produces. Unfortunately Nepali has been very rare around here in the last years. From time to time small quantities become available.
Strain: Nether-Dope, Skuff or Kief (Netherlands)
Cultivation: This Hash is produced from Cannabis plants grown in the Netherlands. Plants are usually cultivated Indoors but there are also small Outdoors and Greenhouse cultivations.
Production: The manufacture method varies with the producer. Most of the Hash is produced thru screening like in Morocco, however there is also a small quantity of hand-rubbed Hash produced using the Afghani method (which of course is much better). However only a very small quantity of the Weed is transformed in Hashish.
Color: Usually quite green, however this varies with the kind of Weed used and the producer.
Smell: Usually quite grass or skunk - like, but depends from the kind of Weed.
Taste: Same as above.
Consistency: A lot of the Dutch Hashish is not pressed correctly (that's an art) and usually beaks apart too easily. However recently the consistency improved, they seem to learn quickly. The above of course doesn't refer to hand-rubbed Hash which is very soft like Afghani. Often the hash is simply the female heads crushed and pressed under huge weights to form a solid lump which very easily powders up.
Effect: The kind of High depends from the strain of Weed which was used, however usually the high is quite active and cerebral.
Potency: Potent to very potent, this stuff is better than any other kind of Hash available to the average user. It even beats most Nepali's and nearly every kind Afghan. (Up to 59% THC)
Availability: Very, very rare outside the Netherlands and surrounding countries. I wouldn't hold your breath waiting for this stuff to appear on the British market.
Sonstiges: The quality varies widely however the price is always high. There isn't any standard denomination for the Dutch Hash. High quality powder can come under the name Sensi-Hash which is simply highly compressed THC crystals.
Cultivation: Hash-Oil can be (and is) produced from any kind of Hash, so the cultivation method varies with the origin country.
Production: Hash-Oil is very simple to make: the dried and powdered Buds are soaked in a (preferably Non-Polar) solvent for a couple of weeks, then the solvent is evaporated and what remains is Hash oil.
Color: Extremely dark green to nearly black.
Smell: Highly aromatic and spicy.
Taste: Highly aromatic and spicy, taste however varies considerably with the source material.
Consistency: Hash-Oil (even a highly pure one) is quite thick and hard at room temperature. At body temperature it becomes extremely sticky, when heated it becomes a liquid.
Effect: Very physical and stony high. Most stony and physical high you can find.
Potency: Potent to very potent.
Availability: Quite rare but becomes available from time to time, probably a lot is produced in someone's kitchen.
Sonstiges: I should add something about the solvents, nearly always some form of Alcohol is used as solvent. While this works quite well (especially if the source material is already good) there is a lot of Chlorophyll and other inactive substances in the product.
A purer form of Hash-Oil, usually called Honey-Oil, is produced by extracting the material with Petroleum-Ether (or some other non-polar solvent) and separating the water soluble substances from the insolubles. Unfortunately in the origin country usually low quality Dope is used in the production of Oil.
It is also quite easy to be ripped off when buying oil since it's very easy to adulterate.
Strain: Pakistani (Pakistan)
Cultivation: Cannabis is especially cultivated in the North-West-Frontier- Province which isn't under government control. This region is considered tribal area. Drugs of every kind are produced, as well as weapons. Every man is permitted (and should) bear a firearm. The best Hashish is produced in the regions of Citral, Swat and Khaibar, however many of the field were converted to Opium fields.
Production: The hash is produced quite exactly like in Afghanistan.
Color: Black on the outside, dark-brown inside. Sometimes even kinds of greenish color can be found.
Smell: Spicy to very spicy.
Taste: Very spicy, quite harsh on the throat (like Afghani).
Consistency: Soft, like Afghani.
Effect: Very physical, somewhat stonier than Afghani.
Potency: Medium to potent (2.4%-15% THC)
Availability: Very rare.
Sonstiges: Until 1979, when the Islamic Rule (of life) was introduced, one could purchase Opium and Hash of various qualities in the so called Government Opium Shops.
Strain: Turk (Turkey)
Cultivation: Cannabis is produced in the rural regions like Anatolia.
Production: The manufacture method (and the resulting product) is very similar to Morocco, the Hashish is pressed from Resin-Powder.
Smell: Slightly spicy.
Taste: Not especially aromatic or spicy, very soft on the throat.
Consistency: When pressed correctly Turk is hard like a rock. Sometimes it can look like over aged Moroccan Hash. Sometimes Turkish hash is encountered as brittle thin wafers which crumble and powder easily.
Effect: Highly cerebral compared to other kinds of Hash. Probably the most cerebral high of any kind of Hash.
Potency: Light to medium, rarely potent.(3.5%-8.8% THC)
Availability: Very rare.
Sonstiges: Turk can be recognized by the typical crack sound it makes when a slab is broken. Hashish use isn't very common in Turkey, Hash is available but you need to have contacts and be very careful.
Harder types of resin - mostly from Morocco and Lebanon are made by sifting mature cannabis flowers through a series of sieves until only a resinous powder remains. This powder is compressed and heated to allow the resins to melt and stick together forming blocks.
The resin is then compressed into blocks and sealed with cellophane or cloth. The result is a hard, brittle hash, usually light yellow to brown and sometimes even reddish brown. Generally, the really hard and yellow stuff which is cerebral is old Lebanese on the whole, and the slightly darker brown hash is usually Moroccan. Apparently, new Lebanese is often also malleable.
The method used in Southern Asia involves rubbing the living flowers of the cannabis plants with hands, a leather apron or other implements. The aim is to get the soft and sticky resins to stick to a surface which can be taken somewhere to be processed and collated.
These are then scraped off the skin or leather and rolled into lumps of various sizes and compressed into blocks. The color is usually dark-brown to black on the surface and lighter on the interior - air contact makes this hash go darker in color. The consistency is normally soft and a lump can usually be moulded into various shapes or sausages.
Usually, the potency of seized hash varies from under 1% THC to 26% THC. Typically the strength is 3% to 8% THC, with the rest being vegetable matter. Remember that THC is not the only drug in cannabis - there are various others such as CBD and CBN which all add to the effect.