Whether you want to store your cannabis for medicinal or recreational purposes, you need to be knowledgeable about the best way to store your herbs. Cannabis degrades over time, just like any organic matter, but there are steps you can take to greatly extend the life of your dried marijuana flowers. Here we talk about the best way to store your cannabis for up to 2 years - maybe even longer - while maintaining its signature scent, taste, and potency.
1. If you've just harvested a fresh crop, trim and cure your cannabis before putting it away for long-term storage. This reduces the chances of mold developing on the flowers.
2. Make room for your cannabis in a controlled environment, preferably a place that is cool, dark, dry, and out of direct sunlight. According to a study conducted at the University of London in the 1970s, “exposure to light (not direct sunlight) was shown to be the greatest single factor in loss of cannabinoids,” so keep this in mind when selecting your storage site. We recommend somewhere low to the ground or a basement if you have one, but don't choose a place above or near appliances and electronics since they emit heat (which reduces cannabinoid, terpene, and essential oil contents within the flowers). The humidity should not be excessive nor completely absent, as too much contributes to the development of mold and mildew, while too little can dry out trichomes and essential oils. Also, even though the environment should be cool (lower temperatures slows the natural decarboxylation process of cannabinoids), don't keep your cannabis in the refrigerator or freezer. Refrigerators can experience fluctuations in the temperature and humidity, and the cold temperatures of freezers can damage trichomes (which diminishes potency).
3. Put each cannabis strain in its own air-tight container. We recommend glass containers, as glass is a natural substance, impermeable, and inert (meaning it has a neutral charge), and that you use a container only large enough to store the amount of cannabis you have. Dark-colored glass also helps block out light. If a glass container isn't an option, put your dried flowers in a brown paper bag within a durable plastic bag that seals. This double-bagging protects the cannabis from any static charge generated by the plastic, which can draw trichomes off the plant. Finally, gently squeeze out as much air as you can, using a vacuum sealer if you have one.
4. Leave your cannabis undisturbed unless you are retrieving some or you want to air out the jar briefly, as handling flowers unnecessarily risks knocking off trichomes that coat cannabis buds (again, lowering potency). We recommend taking the lid off for about 10 minutes once a month if you're storing cannabis for a longer period of time.