So a CBD product has made its way into your life and is slowly becoming an important part of your daily regime. How would you ensure that your CBD product maintains its integrity, remaining usable to for as long as possible?
Just like the others, CBD products can go bad before their time, if not stored properly. After it has lived its shelf life, the product will deteriorate, decreasing the concentration of CBD and other compounds, which in turn will affect its effectiveness.
This article will answer:
- Why is storing CBD correctly important?
- What are the storage factors that affect the potency of a CBD product?
- What is the average shelf life of CBD?
- How to tell if a CBD product has gone bad?
- Generalised Do’s and Don’ts of storing CBD
- A step-by-step how-to for storing CBD oils, tinctures, edibles, capsules, and topicals.
Why is Storing CBD Correctly Important?
At the bottom of it all, CBD is a chemical compound and like other chemical compounds, it needs to be stored properly to avoid it from going bad. Proper storage conditions can help preserve the potency of a CBD product for longer.
The ideal storage conditions for a CBD product should be specified on its label. A typical label would read store in a cool, dry place, away from heat and light.
Heat, light, and moisture are the three factors that can affect the potency or the quality of a CBD product. Another factor that can be added to it is air.
What are the Storage Factors that affect the Potency of a CBD Product?
CBD oil (or any other product, for that matter) is a complex mixture containing different organic compounds. Some of these have the potential to react when exposed to heat leading to a change in the chemical balance of the product.
It is essential to store CBD oil, and other products, away from excessive heat.
CBD Storage Tip 1: Always Choose a Cool Place to Store CBD
It is important to note that storing CBD in a cool place does not necessarily mean keeping them inside the refrigerator.
It just means finding a place that is away from any source of heat. This includes places away from appliances that radiate heat such as oven, refrigerator, hairdryer, etc.
In cool or cold climate areas, storing CBD oil at room temperature should be just fine. However, if you live in an area with a humid or hot climate, then storing CBD inside the fridge won’t be such a bad idea.
Do remember, that low temperatures can cause CBD oil and other liquid products to thicken. If you store CBD inside a fridge for hours, there is a good chance it will turn into a solid state.
However, this is not a cause to panic. You can place the bottle of CBD oil in a bucket or bowl filled with warm water or just let it thaw at room temperature for a while, and it would be good for use again.
Natural or artificial light essentially works on the same principle as heat. This is because light sources generate heat. Research suggests that light is the most significant contributor to the deterioration of cannabinoids.
Both natural and artificial light sources can have a negative impact on the shelf life and the potency of a CBD product.
CBD Storage Tip 2: Never Expose CBD Products to Sunlight
In addition to the action of their heat, UV rays can damage CBD products to the point that they lose their cannabinoid content completely.
This is one of the reasons why CBD oil is packed in an opaque container. It is recommended that you store CBD oil and tinctures in their original bottles.
In addition, please ensure not to keep these bottle near an open window or any other place that could expose the contents of the bottle to sunlight.
The oxygen present in the atmosphere can oxidise the chemical components to CBD leading to oxidative stress. This can ruin the chemical balance of CBD products, thus lowering its effectiveness.
Limiting air exposure to CBD products is perhaps the trickiest of all. After all, air is everywhere. And even though CBD oil and other products come in airtight containers, a certain level of air exposure cannot be avoided.
However, it is important to note that the more air that enters the bottle or container, the more deteriorating the CBD will get.
CBD Storage Tip 3: Store CBD in Airtight Containers
More often than not, the packaging of CBD products is made such that there is minimal exposure to air. The safest way to save CBD products from air exposure is to use products that come in airtight containers with applicators.
However, if the product of your choice comes with a screw cap or a lid, make sure to close it tightly after every use.
Manufacturers often go to great lengths to ensure that the air exposure is kept to a minimum while packaging CBD products. That is why, it is recommended that you store CBD products in their original containers.
What is the shelf life of CBD?
The shelf life of CBD can vary from product to product, depending on the type of extract and the additional ingredients that may be present.
On an average, a new, unopened bottle of CBD oil can be kept fresh for 18-24 months under the right storage conditions.
Once opened, the oil should be able to maintain its cannabinoid concentration and overall chemical profile for around 6 months, given that it is stored in appropriate conditions.
Raw CBD Products can have a Shorter Shelf Life
Raw CBD products, i.e., products that undergo no heating and are minimally processed, can have a shorter shelf life than the one mentioned above. This is because of the natural changes in the CBD and the carrier oil.
How to tell if a CBD product has gone bad?
The freshness of a CBD product can be determined by its taste and odour. If CBD product smells odd or tastes rancid, refrain from using it.
CBD oil changes colour as it degrades. Though deteriorated CBD will not make you sick, its effectiveness will be less.
Some tell-tale signs that your bottle of CBD has gone bad include:
- It’s colour goes from clear to dark brown.
- A foggy coating is visible on the inside of the bottle.
- The smell is overwhelmingly bitter.
- It loses texture and goes from a thicker stock to a thin one.
Do’s and Don’ts of Storing CBD
Here is a list of quick tips that can help you keep your CBD products fresh for a longer period of time:
- Use opaque, glass containers.
- Use airtight or vacuum sealed jars.
- Store the product in a cool, dry place.
- Keep CBD products away from sunlight and appliances that generate heat.
- If you live in an area with a humid or hot climate, refrigerate the CBD.
- Keep it away from the reach of pets and children.
- Leave CBD in your car or any other vehicle.
- Store CBD near the stove, oven, or any other heat source.
- Keep the CBD near an open window.
- Leave the lid of the container open.
How to store CBD Oils and Tinctures?
- Store in a cool, dark, and dry place.
- Avoid leaving them in sunny areas like on a windowsill or a car.
- Shake before using.
- Refrigerate if the climate is hot or humid.
- Do not let the dropper touch your tongue, mouth, or any other unsterilized surface. It may pick up bacteria that would transfer to the bottle leading to the degradation of the product.
How to store CBD Edibles?
- Store in airtight or vacuum sealed containers.
- Refrigerate if the climate is hot or humid.
- Don’t put your hands in the jar. Take out the desired amount of chocolates or gummies in the lid of the container and then consume directly.
How to store CBD Topicals?
- Store at room temperature away from sunlight.
- Always replace and tighten the lid on the container after use.
- When possible, use an applicator or cotton to scoop the topical out of the jar instead of your fingertips. This will prevent any bacteria from your hand getting into the product.
How to store CBD Capsules?
- Store in a secure, lightproof container.
- Both soft and hard gel capsules can be stored at room temperature.
- Close the lid tightly after use.
- Do not place your hand inside the container. Take out the desired amount of chocolates or gummies in the lid of the container and then consume directly.
- Store in a cool, dry place
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