Since CBD oils and tinctures are unregulated, there are a lot of websites claiming to have products with longer-than-usual shelf lives. When buying any CBD product, a good way to find an effective substance with an accurate expiration date is to read reviews about quality and potency. Look for third-party sites and not reviews directly on the manufacturer’s site.
Does CBD oil really expire? If it does, what happens? How long does it take CBD oil to expire? We will explore these questions and others. This guide will show you how to protect your CBD products to ensure that they last longer and how to determine if they are past their prime.
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How Long Does CBD Oil Last?
How long does a bottle of CBD oil last? When does CBD oil expire? Does CBD oil tincture expire? There are plenty of different opinions and findings circulating the internet today in response to these questions. A well-known writer and grower named Ed Rosenthal, author of “Beyond Buds,” says that tinctures and some extract products that are expertly made and stored properly can last indefinitely. He also notes that glycerin-based products are prone to quicker degradation. Mr. Rosenthal recommends storing mixtures with CBD in dropper bottles that are blue or amber in color and keeping them in the refrigerator. He has recommendations for other types of cannabis edibles as well. However, not all mixtures have the same potency or components, and not all mixtures are expertly made. Additionally, not all mixtures are kept refrigerated during shipping or pre-shipping storage. There are plenty of factors that can affect shelf life, which will be covered later.
CBD expert Joy Smith also says that storing CBD products in warm and bright places can degrade active ingredients faster. She notes that although some bottles are designed to filter light, storing those bottles in direct sunlight can still speed up degradation. When you follow storage instructions, she says that the average shelf life of CBD oil products is between one and two years. However, like Mr. Rosenthal, she suggested storing products in a cool and dark place, in a refrigerator or in a freezer to potentially extend their potency beyond their expected useful life of one to two years.
Flo Sugyatno, another CBD expert and operations manager for a notable company, agrees that the average shelf life of most products is a year or two. However, her words also reflect the suggestions of Joy Smith in the potential to prolong the useful life of products by keeping them cool and away from sunlight. Many other manufacturers and researchers echo this suggestion, which means that the general consensus on CBD oil or tincture shelf life is between one and two years.
So, can CBD oil go bad? Although a product may expire, this does not mean that it is unsafe. It should not make a person sick to consume it. When a CBD product expires, it simply loses its potency partially or completely. This means that the expiration date is calculated based on the factors that affect potency.
Factors That Determine the Expiration of CBD Oil
When manufacturers place an expiration date on a CBD oil product, they carefully consider a few important aspects of how it was made. Most manufacturers also test random batches to ensure that the dates they print on their products are accurate when combined with proper care and storage methods. These are the main factors that manufacturers use to calculate expiration dates.
1. Extraction Method
To make CBD oils and tinctures, manufacturers must first extract cannabidiol from the hemp plant. There are several ways to do this, and each method has a lengthy and technical explanation. To shorten it, there are ways to extract CBD using CO2, ethanol or water. As a rule, CO2 extraction is considered the ideal method for preserving the chemical integrity of the hemp. This means that it takes longer for the compounds to break down than it would if they were extracted with a solvent.
The stability that CO2 extraction provides makes it preferable to buyers who want a product with a longer shelf life. There are two CO2 extraction methods, which include supercritical and subcritical extraction. Subcritical is less common and is used to extract temperature-sensitive terpenes and oils. Supercritical is more common and allows the extraction of more cannabinoids, which contributes to a better shelf life. Keep this in mind as you research products.
2. Other Ingredients
The shelf life of additional ingredients can alter the expected shelf life of CBD oil. Extra ingredients may include other compounds, flavors or carrier oils. Manufacturers often use high-quality olive oil, grapeseed oil or another oil as the carrier substance. This helps preserve the shelf life of the CBD. However, if a compound or flavor that is added to the product has a shorter shelf life, that effectively limits the CBD mixture as well. For example, consider a product that would normally have a shelf life of more than a year. If it has a flavor with a shelf life of one year, the shelf life of the entire product would be a year because of that. Good manufacturers understand this and are careful to test substances well and use long-lasting additional ingredients.
3. Extraction Date
This is a factor that is mostly controlled by manufacturers. Although the shelf life of a product may be a year or more, the expiration date is also based on the extraction date. If the manufacturer leaves the product on an inventory shelf for several months, it may only have several more months of usefulness remaining before it expires.
4. Storage and Packaging
Reflecting the earlier references from experts about heat and light, a report from a study in Romania shows that heat and light are important stability factors. In the study, the degradation of cannabinoid content was more pronounced in samples that were exposed to moderate temperature and light than those that were not exposed to light and were stored at a lower temperature. How you store your product and how it is stored before it reaches you are both important to consider. Many conscientious manufacturers use amber or blue dropper bottles for CBD products to help limit light exposure, and they properly store CBD oil products and may refrigerate some of them.
How to Know If Your CBD Oil Has Gone Bad
When a product expires, there are several ways to detect it with edible and non-edible CBD mixtures. As aromatic phenol molecules and cannabinoids break down over time, an edible product starts to lose its taste and smell. If a topical product smells different or has no smell, it may no longer be useful.
With some solutions, you may be able to tell if they are expired by their appearance. Most CBD oil products are clear when they are potent. If the appearance of a substance that is normally clear in a dropper becomes murky, the mixture may not be potent. This is true for broad-spectrum oils and full-spectrum oils.
Since CBD has natural antibacterial properties, bacterial contamination issues are uncommon. Most expired products will not make you ill if you test them. The only potential exception is if the mixture is stored or used improperly enough that it is contaminated. For example, if you remove the lid from a product and leave it off, it is vulnerable to contamination and degradation.
Also, if you touch the dropper of an ingestible solution on a portion of perishable food, there is a chance that you can contaminate the product if you place the dropper back in the bottle immediately after that. If a product has gone bad because of bacterial contamination, it will have an unpleasant and rancid smell. While the smell is usually enough to make you not want to try it, the CBD product may also have a bitter and unpleasant taste. However, a bottle of CBD oil that is several months past its expiration date should not be rancid or contaminated if it is stored properly. It should only be less potent.
Always discard any product that you suspect is contaminated. If your CBD product has lost its taste or smell and has a murkier appearance, you may still be able to use it. However, you may be disappointed to find that it is not as effective. The best solution is to throw out the old solution and buy a new CBD oil product.
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Ways to Preserve Your CBD Oil to Extend Its Longevity
Although it is inevitable for nearly all products to lose their potency at some point if they are not used, the good news is that you have some degree of control over how long your products will be potent. After reading to this point in the guide, you may already have a few ideas about how you will store your products. These are some helpful tips to keep in mind for your CBD oil or tincture.
1. Keep It Cool
As noted by some of the experts earlier in the guide, you can keep some tinctures in the freezer and oils in the refrigerator to help preserve their potency. Also, the Romanian study referenced earlier provided measured results of potency based on temperature, and the potency was higher with products stored at lower temperatures. If you cannot keep your CBD in a refrigerator, find a place away from heat to store it. For example, it is better to keep it upright in a drawer in your room than to store it in a cabinet by your stove.
2. Keep It in the Dark
The blue or amber bottles that many CBD products come in are usually good at filtering out some light. However, to maximize the effectiveness of your solutions, you can keep them in a box, a drawer or somewhere else dark until it is time to measure the contents. When you take out the mixture to measure it, try to do it in a room with low light and little or no sunlight. This helps limit light exposure.
3. Keep It Clean
Even if contaminants do not make the mixture go rancid early, some could contribute to quicker CBD breakdown. The easiest way to avoid any contamination is to avoid touching droppers to other substances or surfaces and to keep the lid on tight. Prolonged air exposure may also contribute to CBD breaking down faster.
When you use a dropper bottle, make sure your hands are clean. Remove the lid, extract the amount needed, drop it out without touching anything and quickly replace the cap. Return it to its storage place promptly. If you accidentally drop a dropper on the floor or table, clean the outside of it carefully if there is debris on it. Rinse it off well, and use a clean towel or paper towel to wipe away the excess water. If your CBD oil product requires the use of a spoon, be sure to use a clean spoon each time.
4. Do Not Mix It
You may be tempted to mix two aromatic blends from different manufacturers, or you may be tempted to mix in another liquid supplement with a half-consumed bottle of CBD oil. Even if the product that you want to mix with it has a later expiration date, it is better to avoid mixing any ingredients with the CBD oil or tincture. Some additives or substances may negatively impact the quality or potency of the CBD. Also, unless the original bottle that CBD oil comes in breaks, it is best to keep the mixture in its original container. Pouring it into a different container may contribute to quicker breakdown.
5. Buy the Right Size and Amount
If your CBD oil product expires before you use all of it, you may reconsider the size of the container that you buy. Some people use CBD oil only as needed to manage occasional pain, and it is better to choose a smaller bottle for infrequent use. If you use it daily, you are less likely to encounter this problem.
If you are tempted to buy CBD oil in bulk and store it unrefrigerated, you are better off buying only what you need. For example, if a manufacturer offers you a deal to get a free bottle if you buy two, you may only use one bottle before they expire. As Mr. Rosenthal wrote in his book, only some tinctures or products that are expertly created and stored have a shelf life that is potentially much longer than a year or two. Unless you can find such products and store them in a freezer, it is better to simply buy what you need than to try to stockpile CBD and risk it losing its potency before you use it.
So, how long does CBD oil last? Although the average shelf life of CBD oil is between a year or two, the potency may last longer with the special care tips in this guide and the right type of product. When you buy, a good rule to follow is to purchase only what you think you will use within a year. If you run low sooner, you can buy more. The benefit of this strategy is that you will have fresher CBD products.
Thoughtful CBD Manufacturing by Calm by Wellness
Calm by Wellness is conscientious about quality in every step of the process. From farm to bottle, every step in procurement and manufacturing is carefully analyzed to ensure the highest quality standards. The manufacturers spent time on the farms that cultivate the hemp plants to ensure that growth standards, from soil content to cultivation methods, were the most effective. Its hemp plants are grown in Minnesota, Oregon and Colorado, and all products are also manufactured in the United States. The plants go through stringent lab testing to ensure that they are of the highest quality, which is an important factor in shelf life.
Taking transparency a step further, Calm by Wellness provides its Certificate of Analysis to give prospective purchasers the assurance of quality in all ingredients. Healthcare Weekly recommends buying products from companies that publish a Certificate of Analysis, which shows that they are reputable and that their products are made from good ingredients.
With a team of knowledgeable staff, Calm by Wellness has been providing reliable CBD products for the last five years. The company includes a team of doctors, researchers, scientists, farmers and health enthusiasts. The blends have been carefully created with all-natural ingredients, and the company uses CO2 extraction to capture more than 80 cannabinoids and terpenes and preserve their potency. Also, Calm by Wellness is careful to ship and sell products in a timely manner instead of letting them sit on inventory shelves. Before they are shipped, products are carefully stored to ensure that potent ingredients are protected.
Calm by Wellness offers a variety of products and quality mixtures for targeted needs, which are indicated on each product. For customers who are new to cannabinoids, terpenes and other related terms, the research team developed a quiz that helps site visitors choose the right product or products for specific needs. In addition to CBD oil mixtures, there are CBD gummies, hand sanitizers and other products. Calm by Wellness is ISO 9001 Certified and cGMP Certified.