Does Weed Go Bad? Here’s How Long Weed Lasts

Does weed go bad?

If weed is properly stored and dried it will not go bad.

If it’s stored improperly it may either become too dry (and lose its potency and taste) or it may go moldy (which makes it toxic to your respiratory system due to mold spores).

How should cannabis be dried and stored?

In some respect, cannabis is similar to dried kitchen herbs such as parsley, basil, oregano and such. Once the flowers are harvested, they are first dried — this is done by keeping the buds in a dark, room temperature place.

After that, the buds should be placed in an air-sealed jar where they go through a process called curing. The moisture content inside the buds is reduced to 62% and curing allows the buds to break down sugars and achieve maximum flavor and potency.

When you buy flowers from licensed producers you can rest assured that all buds are properly dried and cured.

What makes weed go bad?

Cannabis buds have one very dangerous archenemy — mold.

If weed is dried, cured and stored with too much moisture inside it, it can become moldy and unsmokable.

You can easily recognize moldy weed by closely examining the bud with a magnifying glass: Mold looks like a dense grayish cobweb.

Moldy weed

MMJDoctorOnline provides another alternative:

Grab a black light and illuminate the bud. Mold will appear as a distinctive green hue.

If you are thinking about smoking moldy weed, my recommendation is to avoid it at all costs.

When you smoke mold, you inhale thousands of toxic spores, all of which can give you health problems, especially with  your respiratory system.

How do I know if my weed has gone bad?

If you’re buying from a reputable seller (dispensary or an LP) then rest assured that every product has been dried, cured and stored up to medical standards.

If, however, you’re buying weed from an unknown source (which you should never do in the first place) then you need to double check its quality.

It takes experience to recognize a high quality bud. Most importantly you have to answer the following questions:

  1. Are there any seeds inside? If there are, it is most likely a low-grade bud that hasn’t received too much TLC during its development.
  2. Does it look like it’s sprinkled with sugar? If not, then the bud has not developed trichomes, which are the parts of the plant where all cannabinoids are (THC and CBD).
  3. Is the bud sticky? If so, then you got yourself a potent flower. Stickiness comes from the oils inside the trichomes. This can also be a clue as to how “fresh” your bud is.
  4. Can you see any moldy bits? Mold makes weed unsmokable and can even cause some unpleasant health complications like nausea and excessive coughing.
  5. Is the bud too crumbly? This may be an indicator that your weed is too dry. When the weed is dried out, it can burn really quickly and lose the precious cannabinoids.

There are, of course, plenty more ways to identify whether your weed is smokeable or not but your best bet is to stick to this:

  1. Buy your weed from a licensed producer or a reputable dispensary
  2. Store it in an airtight mason jar at home

By doing so, you will be always consuming high grade, fresh product with perfectly balanced taste and potency.

About the author
Luka Petkovic

Editor in chief at Greencamp. Researching topics related to the biochemistry of cannabinoids and interested in the latest industry happenings.

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