How to Store Weed: Keep That Fire Fresh and Safe

When something good goes bad, it can be a real buzz crush. Can we get a moment of silence for that spoiled milk in the back of the fridge and that Kombucha that lost its fizz? Thank you. But while there’s no sense crying over spilled (or spoiled) milk, when good weed goes bad, everyone sheds a tear. You may not know this, but how you store marijuana is key if you want that fire 1/8th you fell in love with to throw the same heat two weeks later. If you don't keep your storage game tight, good weed will go bad, and bad weed can get so bad it can be hazardous to your health. So don’t treat that kind bud like the leftover Chinese growing mold in your crisper. No. Let's learn how to store that fire, so it stays that way. It’s time to learn how to store weed and become the keeper of the flame!

What’s the Best Way to Store Cannabis Flower?

This is not a one size fits all answer when it comes to proper cannabis storage. It all depends on where you are. Do you live in a desert with high temperatures and low humidity? Do you live in a tropical environment that’s warm and humid? Do you live someplace where the seasons change? Are you a jet-setting baller that splits time between San Tropez and St. Moritz? Regardless, where you are has everything to do with how to store your cannabis buds.

The thing about weed is that she’s kind of like Goldilocks. She’s picky. Weed doesn’t like it if it’s too hot. She doesn’t like it if it’s too cold. She doesn’t like it if it’s too wet. And weed doesn’t like it if it's too dry.  No, weed likes it just right, and just right is around 65 degrees and 60% humidity, with as little exposure to air and light as possible.

So, if it’s too hot, you must adjust. If it’s too humid, you need to adjust for that. If it’s too dry, you need to adjust for that. If it’s too cold…you get the point. If this sounds like mission impossible, relax. You don’t need to build a climate-controlled weed storage facility. It’s fine if you’re not perfect. The ideal environment is just that: an ideal. It is

something to shoot for. And there are some excellent reasons for that.

Pro Tip: Something to keep in mind that can make all the difference in the quest for freshness is how old your cannabis products are when you buy them. At a licensed dispensary, cannabis labeling always includes the harvest date. The less time between harvest and purchase, the less time your weed has had to degrade. So if you want the freshest of the fresh, always check the harvest date. If it’s more than eight weeks old, consider something else.

Why is it Important to Store Weed Properly?

Weed is picky. We know that much. But what are the consequences if you don’t treat her right? Let’s look at ways that all that good can go bad without the proper care.

Heat is bad for weed.

Terpenes are essential oils that give cannabis its nose and flavor. Excessive heat causes terpenes to evaporate. Heat may also degrade cannabinoids like THC into non-psychoactive cannabinoids like CBN, which means less potency.

High humidity levels are harmful to weed.

For starters, if your weed is stored at high humidity, it can make it too damp to smoke properly. It may also negatively impact flavor. Worse, high humidity can also cause mold growth.

What happens if you smoke moldy weed? Nothing good. You may experience coughing, nausea, and vomiting. People allergic to mold could get inflammation of their sinuses or lungs.

Low humidity levels are harmful to weed.

Terpenes and cannabinoids also degrade in low humidity. So if you’ve ever seen a dried-out bud crumble to dust on contact or inhaled that harsh and flavorless smoke, you know what we’re talking about. If not, we hope this guide means you never have to experience that!

Freezing temperatures are bad for weed.

Yes, the freezer helps keep many things from going bad, but weed isn't one of them. Trichomes are where the cannabinoids and terpenes in cannabis live, and freezing weed may cause the trichomes to become brittle and break off. So, instead of maintaining potency, freezing your cannabis may cause you to lose it.

Exposure to light is bad for weed.

Light exposure degrades marijuana. According to the research, there may be as much as a . 5% decline in potency per hour of exposure to UV light. Moreover, UV light does not convert THCa to THC.

Exposure to air is bad for weed.

Humans need oxygen to live, but oxygen is a THC killer. Oxygen exposure will degrade cannabis faster, converting THC to CBN like heat does.

Best Place to Store Weed

Let’s start with some fundamentals. Thankfully, humans prefer a climate close enough to weed’s ideal storage conditions that the temperature in the average home should be close to ideal. Humidity may be another story, but we’ll get to that later.  Ideally, weed should be stored in a cool, dry, and dark place with minimal exposure to air. Closets, cabinets, or drawers are all good places.

Another thing to consider is what type of container to store it in. Assuming you purchased your cannabis from a licensed dispensary, it’s likely that it came in a glass jar or mylar bag. Depending on how long you plan to store this weed, these containers are both adequate. They have to be. Some cannabis may sit on a dispensary shelf for as long as three months, and both types of containers are designed to maintain the integrity of the weed for the duration.

That being said, light may be an issue. Some glass jars and bags are clear to see the flower inside the container. While looking at those tasty nugs is nice, it's bad for them. If you plan to keep that weed for a while, transfer it to a container that doesn’t expose your precious pot to light. Think of weed like a vampire. It likes the dark. Light can kill it!

What’s the Best Container to Store Weed?

There are literally hundreds of cannabis containers available online. Most of them are amazing. If that’s your style, hit up Google and handle it. But if you’re the DIY type, you don’t need to go there. Any airtight container will work:

You can store weed in mason jars

Mason jars seal well, so odor is not an issue. Glass containers are preferable to plastic because it doesn’t breathe. One problem with mason jars is they’re clear. Storing in a drawer or cabinet will resolve the light exposure problem. Another way to correct it is to put the mason jar inside a dark sock or sleeve that blocks the light.

You can store weed in vacuum-sealed bags.

Food has been stored this way forever. Why? Because it works. If you’re willing to invest in the equipment, vacuum-sealing will keep your weed fresh because there’s zero exposure to air. This prevents mold growth and stops it from drying out.

The downside of vacuum sealing is that plastic is clear, so you will still need to protect your weed from light. Another downside is that plastic, well, kind of sucks. First, it carries a plastic charge that will knock trichomes off your weed. Second, the last thing this world needs is more plastic. Thankfully, there are compostable or recyclable options. Use them. Please. Thank you!

You can store weed in UV-protected Tupperware.

This brings us back to commercial options specifically manufactured for cannabis storage. If you’re going to go this route, go with glass. It’s just better than plastic. Period.

You’re Doing it Wrong — Bad Ideas for Storing Cannabis

You already know some of these. For example, the refrigerator or the freezer is a bad idea. So is anything that exposes your marijuana to excessive heat, light, or high or low humidity. But one of the things humans are really good at is coming up with bad ideas. This is why Drano has to have a warning label that tells us not to drink it. Thank you, Drano! So, here are a few more bad ideas for storing cannabis.

Storing weed in plastic bags is a bad idea.

Why? Because they breathe. Because they expose your weed to air. Because they expose your weed to light. And because plastic kind of sucks. So, say no to the Ziploc bag!

Packing your weed tight in the container is a bad idea

Smushing weed is always a bad idea. Maybe you don’t remember the bad old days of brown Mexican brick weed, but that was the ultimate smushed cannabis and doing that to that fresh 1/8th you just picked up is just plain disrespectful. It ruins the integrity of the flowers and also encourages mold. Your weed deserves better than that. So do you. No smushing!

Leaving weed out is a bad idea.

Always put your stash away after a sesh. Remember that light, heat, and air all degrade cannabis. So the kitchen counter or living room coffee table is not the best place to store your weed. Just take that extra step and put it in a drawer or cabinet. If you prefer,  buy a stash box to hold your weed and everything that goes with it. Look at you now. You so fancy!

The Benefits of Properly Storing Cannabis

Just like fine wine, whiskey, or even cheese, cannabis is always cured before it’s packaged and cured with great care.  Any professional cultivator will tell you that a proper cure can make or break cannabis. Therefore, professional cultivators are always just as meticulous with their cure as they are with every other process step.

Typically, a proper cure may take as long as two weeks or sometimes longer to ensure the cannabis that is packaged is at its absolute best. If you want to keep it that way, proper storage is essential because:

  • It preserves cannabinoids and terpenes.
  • It maintains adequate moisture content.
  • It maintains flavor and aroma.
  • It maintains potency and quality.

Pro Tip: If you live in a dry climate, humidity packs are available to maintain your cannabis with ideal moisture content. It's a wise investment.

How to Tell if My Weed Has Gone Bad

Bad is a relative term here. Marijuana doesn’t spoil like milk or meat. Smoking old weed is rarely harmful, except for cannabis that had been stored improperly and grown mold. That being said, here are a few ways you can tell if your weed isn’t stored correctly or it’s not as fresh as it should be:

  • Your marijuana has lost its aroma.
  • There is too much moisture or condensation in the container.
  • Your cannabis feels crunchy, dry, brittle, or rough.
  • Your weed crumbles to dust when you break it up.
  • Your cannabis is too wet or sticky to break up.
  • Your weed does not burn slowly and evenly.
  • Your marijuana has unusual color or discoloration.
  • There is mold or mildew on your weed.

Keep Your Panacea Flower Fresh and Fragrant!

Just like Goldilocks, weed is temperamental. She likes things just right, so storage is key. Treat her right, and you will become the keeper of the flame. It’s all up to you, friend.

At Panacea, we always treat our cannabis with care and keep our flower menu fresh. So visit Panacea today or order online for the freshest flower in the game!