Here are some great tips for safely storing cannabis that will help keep your cannabis nice and fresh. Contact Kelo Cannabis now to learn more about how to store cannabis.
Does Cannabis Degrade and Lose Its Potency?
Not only can weed degrade and lose its potency, but without proper storage, cannabis can dry up or grow mold. Smoking moldy weed is unsafe, and dry weed loses its potency and flavor, fast. This would be bad if you paid good money for quality weed and want it to maintain its quality. Thus keeping cannabis in small plastic baggies — as many have done for years — won’t make it last longer.
According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), when kept at room temperature, cannabis deteriorates due to losing 3 to 5% of THC per month. The UNODC also claims that storing cannabis at room temperature in the dark will help keep it reasonably stable for around one to two years.
But what are the other factors required to keep cannabinoids potent? What’s the best type of storage container to keep cannabis in and what else can be done to prevent weed from losing its effectiveness? In this article, we will look at the answers to these questions and more, to properly store cannabis so that it remains as fresh as possible.
Tips for Storing Cannabis
While cannabis does not come with an expiration date, there are ways to ensure it remains in the best condition possible, whether you are storing it for a week or a year.
Moisture is one of the worst things for cannabis to come in contact with during storage. It can have serious health risks due to mold and mildew growth. Because these are serious risks, in May 2018, the “American Society for Testing and Materials” (ASTM), published standard specifications to maintain acceptable water (aw) for dry cannabis, which range from 0.55 to 0.65. At a humidity level of 65% or higher, your weed has a good chance of growing mold. If your cannabis is moldy, it will be foul and almost impossible to smoke. Therefore, you should always ensure your weed stays dry during storage.
It is also important that your weed doesn’t get too dry during storage or your cannabis flower can become brittle and cause vital cannabinoids and terpenes to degrade, hence impacting its taste, potency, and integrity. That’s why it is a good idea to maintain a proper balance between humidity levels and dryness when storing your cannabis to keep cannabis fresh.
Evergreen Pod Humidifying Capsules are one way of keeping your cannabis at the proper humidity level for optimum potency and taste. They are also reusable and an eco-friendly solution that helps absorb and discharge moisture as needed.
While there are many factors that can result in the degradation of your cannabis, the primary threat is light, especially sunlight. Just as it bleaches out your old stuffed animals sitting in your backyard, or washes the vivid dye out of your hair, sunlight can also degrade the integrity of the chemical known as THC in your weed. UV photons break the chemical bonds in THC, leading to destabilization and loss of potency.
According to Orange Photonics, a cannabis testing lab, sunlight exposure will cause around a 0.5% decline of cannabis potency per hour. This happens when a UV light photon hits a cannabinoid molecule in a chemical bond location and breaks the molecule down into smaller constituents. Many of them will further degrade and not be stable, and the original molecule will have vanished without a trace. Because of this, it is imperative to store your flower in a dark, or at least an opaque place away from direct sunlight or any light source.
Oxygen is another critical factor when it comes to long-term cannabis storage. Oxygen will convert THC into CBN over time, but during that time, air leaks will lead to losing potency. Conversely, having too little oxygen can retain potency, but it could also increase humidity levels, allowing mold to establish. The best way to keep your cannabis protected from oxygen exposure is by vacuum sealing it. but that may not be an option for some people who don’t usually have vacuum sealers.
An alternative to a vacuum seal is to keep your cannabis protected in an airtight jar, also known as a curing jar. An effective and common solution is a wide-mouth mason jar with a strong latch and a rubber seal. Thus, choose a jar that is the right size to fit your stash. A good recommendation to safely store cannabis is to keep the jar about ¾ full. In addition, try not to pack your weed down, even if the jar is packed full to the rim. This helps prevent humidity from rising.
High temperatures cause terpenes to evaporate and cannabis buds to dry out, resulting in an unpleasant flavor and harsh smoke. The ideal temperature for storing cannabis must be below 78 to 86 degrees since mold and mildew will thrive at these temperature thresholds.
Keeping your weed in an air-tight jar stored in a dark cool spot can help keep your cannabis at the best quality. However, for some people, a cool dark space may be a refrigerator, but this is not advised due to the increased moisture content. Yet some people will store their cannabis in a freezer, but freezing temperatures can cause trichomes in cannabis to lose potency and burst. Therefore, the best location to store cannabis is in a basement, a closet, or a dark corner.
The bottom line is how and where you store your cannabis can either make it or break it. If you want to extend the quality and shelf life of your weed, there are just a few things to remember:
- Make sure your weed remains dry during storage, but not so dry that it becomes brittle.
- Store your weed away from light, especially direct sunlight.
- Keep your weed in an air-tight jar but don’t smash it down, rather leave it laying loose.
- Finally, ensure your weed is in a cool location.
Get top-quality cannabis from Kelo Cannabis, your best source for cannabis products.