What is the shelf life of cannabis – storing it properly is more important than you think!

On every food you will find a best before date. Your weed doesn’t have such a date, but does it have an unlimited shelf life? Actually not! It depends on different influences how long your cannabis will keep. If you store the buds in a bag in bright light, the valuable cannabinoids will quickly evaporate. In an airtight jar, on the other hand, the potency will last longer. We tell you everything you need to know about the proper storage of your buds and the shelf life.

Best before... - what we know about medical cannabis

For risks and side effects, we ask someone who knows. Pharmacists and doctors are only available as contact persons if you use cannabis for medical reasons. But it doesn’t even have to be weed bought illegally from a dealer, shelf life also plays an important role with CBD. A look at the medical products that pharmacies sell with expiration dates reveals:

  • Cannabis oils have a minimum shelf life of one year
  • Concentrates last up to six months
  • Creams and ointments containing cannabis last a maximum of one year

And what about the ever-popular flowers? Here it is already more difficult to define a clear shelf life limit.

Taste, smell, effect - what happens when cannabis goes bad?

Dried cannabis flowers have an average shelf life between half a year and a whole year. Again, factors like sunlight, temperature, and storage are important. As long as you don’t notice any mold on the flower of your cannabis products, or they smell musty, they are not spoiled. However, this does not necessarily mean that the potency is still fully present. In the wrong environment, the cannabinoids contained are quickly lost, which of course significantly reduces the effect. Here are a few guidelines for you to follow:

  • After 24 months of storage, cannabis has lost about 26% THC.
  • After 36 months of storage, the THC content is reduced by about 34%.
  • After 48 months of storage, cannabis has lost an average of 41% THC.

By losing the THC in large quantities, the effect is lost. You may still feel something, but the high potency is no longer present. Before it comes to a visual decay of the flower, you will first feel effect limitations. By the way, this is not only true for THC products, but also for CBD, CBN and other cannabinoids.

The right packaging has an influence on the shelf life

The quality of your grass is always determined by the storage. You should avoid plastic bags, as they can have a negative influence on the trichomes. In addition, there is often high humidity inside plastic, which in turn can promote mold growth. The optimal conditions are provided by a dark screw-top jar, which you store in a dark and dry place. Ideally, of course, a humidity controller should not be missing. However, you should not use the refrigerator, because the temperatures fluctuate too much. In the closet, your grass can stand in closed containers without the sun, temperatures or other environmental conditions posing a problem.

The top 10 info around the effect and shelf life of cannabis

  1. Avoid UV rays, they destroy the effect of marijuana.
  2. Make sure that your cannabis products are not exposed to moisture.
  3. Storage in glass containers is perfect for preserving aroma and effect.
  4. The ideal temperature for storing marijuana is 22 – 23 ° degrees.
  5. Avoid storing in the refrigerator, as there are too many fluctuations.
  6. Always store your cannabis away from other substances.
  7. Check your stocks regularly for mold spores to prevent major infestations. Also, always store CBN, CBD and other cannabis species carefully and dry.
  8. Pack your marijuana immediately from the plastic bags that are often used in delivery.
  9. Check the smell when using stored cannabis.
  10. If the potency decreases, it is a sign of reduced shelf life.

Moldy cannabis - a risk for your health

If you discover a white down on the surface of your flowers, this can be an indication of mold. It is usually the result of improper storage or a high sensitivity of the flowers. If you are not sure, it is best to check the smell. Rotten cannabis smells like a cellar and is no longer pleasant. You should not use it anymore.

Does your cannabis feel damp? Do you notice black spots on the cannabis flowers that were not there when you mined it? Then there is a high risk that your marijuana is spoiled. Even if it hurts, you should not use it anymore, but dispose of it. This is even more true if the expiration date of medical products has already been reached.

Does marijuana always mold when stored for a long time?

Whether your weed goes moldy also depends on the way you store it. You can store your cannabis properly in a glass container in a dark cupboard to extend its shelf life. But even if you do everything right with storage, cannabis products lose their potency over time. You cannot stop this process! Without mold, you can still consume your cannabis flowers, but you will no longer achieve the same effect.

The degradation of THC and other cannabinoids is particularly fast when your flowers are exposed to UV light. The active ingredient CBDA contained in cannabis is transformed into CBD by UV light. This in turn influences the aroma, quality and taste of weed!

Cannabis flowers not harvested - does the plant also spoil before harvest?

Cannabis is ready for harvest at a certain point. For faster harvests are grown indoors, the outdoor area allows the plants a little more time to develop. Immediately after harvest, the THC content is at its highest. If the flowers are now harvested and dried, they have an average shelf life of 6 to 12 months. But what actually happens when cannabis is not harvested?

In this case, the weed will gradually spoil. Imagine not harvesting a head of lettuce and just leaving it in the bed. It will remain edible for some time, but eventually the plant will not be able to support the flowers and will wither away. Timely removal of the set plants is therefore essential!

Rolled joint - how long is the shelf life of the finished hash cigarette?

The grass is already turned into the joint and suddenly something comes in between. A moment of carelessness and it is already rolled under the table. Days later you find the joint again and ask yourself whether the weed is still durable.

In fact, a few days is not a problem, at most the aroma may be a little more limited. If you find the joint after a year, it will be dried out and undrinkable. In principle, the storage of buds in the form of joints is not a bad idea.

The prerequisite here is also that the rolled bags do not get UV light and that they are stored away from moisture. The same storage conditions apply as for your buds. It’s best to pack your joints in a vacuum, where they are protected from external influences.

Conclusion: Grass can spoil - it is not an all-round product

Even though weed has a lot of potential, it is not invulnerable. Cannabinoids like THC will evaporate if you don’t store your cannabis optimally. As long as no mold is visible, you can continue to use your weed. However, be careful not to store so much in the first place. Fresh weed is still the best for most users!