One of the basic principles for indulging in the beautiful bud is learning how to store weed to keep it fresh for as long as possible.
With proper storage, your herb can last for up to two to three years, allowing you ample time to partake in its benefits whenever you need them.
Sounds too good to be true, right? Nope!
We are here to provide a helpful guide that will explain how to store weed properly and how to extend the shelf life of your favourite cannabis products.
Keep on reading to learn how to store your cannabis so that it stays in tip-top condition for as long as possible.
What Causes Weed to Degrade?
Multiple factors can influence the degradation of your buds and marijuana products.
Light, air, humidity, and temperature are examples of some essential core elements that can make or break the shelf life of your weed.
The most significant factor that decreases the quality of your bud is exposure to too much light.
A study published in the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology found that light was the top factor in the loss of cannabinoids. This study also suggested that cannabinoids maintain stability for up to two years when stored in the dark.
In other words, light can reduce the taste and flavour profile of your buds while also decreasing its potency.
Harmful UV rays from the sun can also alter your bud’s composition and burn up the most valuable compounds in the cannabis plant, including cannabinoids and terpenes.
For this reason, it’s better to find light-proof cannabis storage that will help keep your bud out of light to prolong its shelf life.
Another big factor that influences long-term weed storage is air.
Extended exposure to oxygen speeds the degradation process, oxidizes cannabis and changes THC levels present in buds.
For example, researchers at the Swedish National Forensic Centre exposed cannabis to air and analyzed long-term storage effects over four years. After it ended, they found that exposure to air decreased the THC content of the resin by 64–74%.
Thus, the right amount of air is vital for keeping your bud fresh and potent for a more extended period.
Temperature and Humidity
Temperature and humidity are the last two factors that influence the degradation of your bud.
High temperatures combined with high humidity levels can lead to mildew growth on your weed.
Because mold and mildew thrive at temperatures between 78 and 86 degrees, it is best to store your cannabis in an area that doesn’t get any hotter than 70 degrees.
Generally, a cool, dark place will go a long way in keeping your weed fresher for longer.
When it comes to humidity, you will want to store your weed in a controlled environment with proper humidity levels. Ideally, you should keep cannabis between 59 and 63% RH (relative humidity).
Keeping your RH level below 59% reduces the chances of mold infestation and keeps buds fresh without getting too dry.
How to Store Weed and Keep It Fresh
Now that you know the factors that can degrade your weed let’s learn how to store it to ensure it remains in tip-top condition for as long as possible.
Airtight Glass Containers
Airtight glass jars are the best when it comes to cost-effective long-term weed storage.
Airtight glass jars protect your bud from outside moisture and air while also containing the dank smell of the weed inside the jar.
Once you have your weed in an airtight glass jar, make sure to keep it in the dark, away from heat. It will help maintain your bud’s temperature and potency, keep your weed fresh and prevent mold from getting to your stash.
Humidity packs, like those available from Top Shelf, help preserve and maintain an appropriate relative humidity in each mason jar or airtight glass container while also preventing mold growth.
How Not to Store Your Weed
To keep your weed safe and fresh, we don’t recommend using a plastic container such as a sandwich bag or plastic pop-top bottles. Plastic containers can affect the flavour of marijuana and are also less effective at preventing air exposure.
It’s also not the best idea to use a tobacco humidor. Most tobacco humidors use cedarwood, which has oils that can absorb into the flower and affect your bud’s flavour.
What’s more, they also tend to use propylene glycol to regulate humidity, which can alter the taste of your weed.
When storing weed long-term, it’s also essential to keep cannabis flower separate from other cannabis products to avoid the smell transferring over and absorbing into your weed.
Lastly, do not store your bud in the freezer. Freezing temperatures change the structure of trichomes, and, over time, they become brittle and break off when handled.
How to Store Weed – Other Products
Different cannabis products will require different storage guidelines.
In terms of medical marijuana products, you should use them as directed by your doctor and before their established expiration date.
It’s best to keep your product sealed tight in its original storage container and place it in a cool, dark and dry place to prevent mold and mildew from building up.
Keep all these tips in mind when storing your cannabis, and check our CBD guide for more tips on how to store CBD products.