If you’ve recently bought cannabis then you need to follow correct storage practices. That old pill bottle or flimsy sandwich bag will negatively impact the quality and longevity of your buds.
This article explains why and how to store your cannabis correctly to ensure that you get your money’s worth.
Why Worry About Cannabis Storage?
Cannabis is a plant like any other. When growing, it thrives on sunlight, air and moisture. But once you pick it, you need to manage its exposure to those elements to preserve freshness. Just like fresh herbs in your pantry can dry out into a dusty-tasting pile of unusable product, that “herb” in your stash bag can follow a similar trajectory.
If the relative humidity (RH) around the cannabis is too low, it will dry out, shedding terpene-rich trichomes in the process, and leaving you with flavorless weed. Dry cannabis also burns sooty and fast for a lacklustre smoking experience, which is why most experts recommend a humidifier for weed. And on the other side of the coin, cannabis exposed to high RHs (overly humid environments) may cultivate mold, rendering your stash unsafe to smoke.
Likewise, exposing cannabis to open air and sunlight can damage the product, reducing its potency – according to this peer-reviewed four-year study.
Sourcing the Right Container
Managing the effects of air, sunlight, and humidity starts with a proper container. Consider this your cannabis’ fortress – its first line of defense against the elements.
Ideally, you want an opaque container with a tight-fitting lid or zipper. Dedicated cannabis storage containers work perfectly – they have a tight-sealing screw top and (often) opaque walls. Heavy-duty stash bags can also work, provided you find the right spot for them (see below). Finally, you can use a Mason jar as a container in a pinch.
Finding the Right Spot
How many food labels have you seen that say “store in a cool, dark and dry place”? Well, that advice applies here as well.
Find somewhere in the home removed from sunlight, heat and excessive humidity. Examples to the contrary might include the window sill (where direct sunlight can harm the cannabis’ potency), next to the oven (where heat can also degrade cannabinoids) or in the bathroom (where the shower’s humidity might engender mold growth). The top of a bedroom closet is an ideal candidate.
Dialing in the Relative Humidity
According to the National Cannabis Industry Association, cannabis thrives between 59% and 63% RH – a very slim window with little margin for error. Any lower, you risk drying out the cannabis and losing the flavorsome terpenes. Any higher, you risk mold.
Luckily, honing in on the perfect RH is simpler than it sounds. Add a two-way humidity control pack (most people refer to it by its brand name, Boveda) to your storage container. The pack absorbs and emits moisture to maintain a precise RH, ensuring your stash is always fresh.
Never suffer through lackluster, flavorless, quick-burning or moldy weed again. Follow the straightforward steps above to store your cannabis correctly.