The conventional wisdom on how to store cannabis to keep it fresh for the longest possible time might just be wrong.
Most cannabis consumers store their herb in airtight containers or plastic bags and try to keep it away from direct sunlight in order to preserve its freshness. While this storage method works just fine for making it last a few days or weeks, you might want to try something else if you need to keep your weed fresh for months or even years. For long-term cannabis storage, try sticking your stash in the freezer.
That's according to a new Italian study that looked at how different storage methods affected the deterioration of THC (cannabis's intoxicating compound) over time. Researchers stored cannabis four different ways and tested the THC levels of each stash before and after storing for 100 days.
Cannabis stored at room temperature in a bright room lost 13 percent of its THC content after 100 days. Meanwhile, cannabis stored at room temperature in a dark room lost 11 percent. That's not a great sign for the traditional storage method.
But when cannabis is stored in the refrigerator at four degrees Celsius, THC deterioration was significantly lessened. And when placed in a freezer at -20 degrees Celsius, there was no noticeable change in THC content after 100 days.
"Freezing is the best storage condition to avoid the reduction of the cannabinoids content over time," wrote the study authors.
But if you prefer cannabis with a high amount of the non-intoxicating cannabis compound CBD, you don't have too much to worry about. Concentrations of CBD stays "relatively constant over time" regardless of your storage method.
Of course, there are other things to consider when trying to find the best way to store your weed. Things like flavor and scent will also change and deteriorate over time. So if you've selected a particular strain because of these attributes, you'll want to save them as well. Unfortunately, this particular study didn't look at what different storage methods do to scent and flavor over time, so we'll leave that up to you to figure out for yourself.
h/t: Marijuana Moment