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Does CBD oil expire?

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  1. How long does CBD oil last?
  2. Does CBD oil go bad?
  3. What is the best way to store CBD oil?

A bottle of high-quality CBD oil can be expensive, and if you’re like us, you want to make that liquid gold last as long as possible. If you’re only using a few drops a day, it could be many months or even a year before you use up the entire bottle. Which might leave you asking yourself, “Does CBD oil expire?”

Here are answers to some common questions about CBD longevity, including how to extend the shelf life of CBD oil.

How long does CBD oil last?

The general rule of thumb is that CBD oil has a shelf life ranging from 14 months to two years, depending on how the product is stored. Direct sunlight and intense heat are two factors that can cause a bottle of CBD oil to go bad before its expiration date. Higher-quality products tend to last longer, especially those that have been minimally processed like full-spectrum CBD oil. Pure CBD oil may last longer than flavored oils since any added ingredients have a shelf life of their own that could be shorter than the shelf life of the CBD.

The general rule of thumb is that CBD oil has a shelf life ranging from 14 months to two years, depending on how the product is stored. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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It’s also a good idea to be aware of what extraction process was used to make the product. Many cannabis experts agree that the CO2 method is best for producing premium oil that stays potent longer because the hemp or cannabis compounds remain stable during this type of extraction. Other methods may destabilize the compounds, potentially creating a lower-quality bottle of CBD oil with a shorter shelf life.

Any CBD product — whether it’s top-shelf or bargain-priced — should have an expiration date clearly printed on the label. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires such labeling for consumer protection, so steer clear of any CBD products (or any products for that matter) that are not in compliance.

Does CBD oil go bad?

CBD oil can lose its potency if stored improperly or kept for longer than two years. Weak CBD oil means that the cannabinoids have broken down and don’t function at peak levels in the body. So, an older bottle is less likely to deliver any of the potential therapeutic effects of CBD oil, such as pain relief.

How do I know if CBD oil has gone bad?

The aroma and flavor of CBD oil may become unpleasant over time, transforming from earthy to skunky. You can also observe visual changes in the oil, which may turn cloudy over time. Likewise, the texture of CBD oil will change and the oil may appear thicker and lose its smooth consistency. Lastly, a change in color indicates that the CBD oil is no longer fresh.

Can old CBD oil make you sick?

CBD oil does not spoil or turn rancid like milk or other oils, so you are unlikely to become ill if you consume a small amount of the product past its prime. This is especially true if you are microdosing. But to be on the safe side, toss any bottles that have been improperly stored or sitting in your medicine cabinet for longer than two years.

What is the best way to store CBD oil?

Manufacturers know that cool, dark places are optimal for storing CBD oil, which is why many of the best products are packaged in glass bottles tinted green. Dark green bottles prevent damaging sunlight from penetrating and hastening the product’s expiration date. Refrigerating CBD oil is not necessary. In fact, the most favorable environment may just be room temperature, or 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

CBD dropper

Tinted bottles prevent damaging sunlight from penetrating and hastening the product’s expiration date. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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CBD dropper

How can I make CBD oil last longer?

Here are some pointers to keep CBD oil fresh until the upper end of the shelf-life range (24 months):

  • Open the bottle only when in use, then reseal the cap tightly. Oxidation is a foe of CBD and will shorten the shelf life.
  • Keep CBD soft gels and capsules in their original bottle, ensuring that containers are consistently airtight.
  • Store bottles upright rather than horizontally.
  • Find the coolest, darkest place in your home to store CBD oils and tinctures. Drawers, cabinets, a pantry, and the cellar all make ideal CBD storage centers.
  • Try not to store your CBD in a room where you use a humidifier, as excessive moisture can encourage mold to form.
  • Do not store CBD oil near a window. Direct sunlight will accelerate the expiration date of any CBD product.
  • Keep CBD oil away from all warm places in your home, such as radiators and ovens. Likewise, don’t store CBD oil in your purse or pocket for long periods. Any warm place can be a breeding ground for bacteria.
  • If you’re using a spoon or a dropper to dole out the CBD, make sure the utensil is clean. Don’t “double dip” a spoon, as you can introduce harmful bacteria and contaminate the oil.

When it comes to keeping your CBD oil potent, Dr. Bonni Goldstein, a medical adviser to Weedmaps and director of Canna-Centers in Lawndale, California, sums it up best: “Shelf life for most products is about one year, although the storage conditions are important. Minimizing exposure to heat and light can help extend the shelf life.”

Does CBD oil expire? Copy article link to clipboard. Link copied to clipboard. Contents How long does CBD oil last? Does CBD oil go bad? What is the best way to store CBD

Does CBD Oil Expire? Learn What You Need to Know

Jim McDonald

  1. How long does CBD last?
  2. How to preserve and extend the life of CBD oil

Like most consumable products, CBD (or cannabidiol) has a shelf life. And as with most things we eat, drink, or use as medicine, it’s almost impossible to say exactly what that shelf life is. Think about milk. Sometimes it starts to turn sour before the expiration date on the bottle, but usually it tastes fine for days or even weeks after the date. Are there things we can control that make it last longer?

Some of the same factors that make it hard to predict how a bottle of milk will age also prevent us from pinning down the exact date a bottle of CBD oil will expire. Does CBD oil go bad? And if it does, how can we postpone that day and preserve our CBD as long as possible?

How long does CBD last?

How long CBD oil lasts shouldn’t be confused with how long CBD lasts in your body. What we want to know today is how long the strength and flavor of CBD products last in storage or during normal use. And guess what? It’s tricky.

Does CBD oil expire?

Almost every product that can lose potency, flavor or quality has some kind of date printed on the package to indicate when that might happen. Usually it is an expiration date (or expiry in Canada and the U.K.). Sometimes the label says “best by.” Some have a “sell by” date, and yet other brands state when the product was made and let you decide when to stop using it. Some have a combination, noting the date of manufacture and the expiration.

These expiration or “best by” dates are little more than cautious guesses. There haven’t been any published studies measuring the efficacy of CBD as it ages—although common sense indicates that it probably loses some potency as it gets older and is exposed to the elements. How much strength is lost over time? No one knows for sure, but the general consensus is that CBD products are at their best for one to two years.

Can CBD oil go bad?

Most CBD products are made by mixing the CBD itself with some carrier substance that gives it shape or texture. Many products use oils, like CBD gummies and edibles, most CBD oil tinctures, and CBD creams and topicals. A few tinctures use alcohol as a solvent and base, and nearly all CBD vape juice uses propylene glycol and glycerin (even if it’s mistakenly called oil). Generally speaking, the base liquid is probably more at risk of degrading than the CBD itself.

Although it’s rare in CBD products, oils can become rancid when the fatty acids oxidize. Coconut oil, for example, begins to break down in about 18 months. Tinctures made by alcohol infusion are likely to keep longer than those made with oil, but some people dislike them because they definitely taste like medicine. CBD vape juice, like all e-liquid, is not likely to “go bad” to the point that it’s unvapeable, but some flavorings in e-juice can get stale, and sweeteners (if used) can clog coils and wicks as they thicken and degrade with age.

How much organic material is left in any particular CBD product depends in large part on the method used to extract the CBD from the hemp or marijuana plant. Most current commercial CBD products have almost none of the original plant matter left (especially if they’re made with CBD isolate), so degradation caused by decaying bits of hemp is generally not an issue.

How can you tell if CBD is bad or expired?

The good news is that you’ll probably use your CBD long before it gets close to losing its potency or spoiling. You would have to be extremely careless handling CBD products for them to noticeably degrade in less than a year. Beyond that, there are a couple ways to tell if your CBD is still okay to use.

If you’re very cautious, you can simply trust the printed expiration date, and discard CBD before there’s any doubt. If you use CBD for relief from specific conditions, you’ll probably notice if it stops working properly. Finally, for products you eat, drink or inhale, the flavor will tell you when to toss the product. If it tastes musty or slightly rotten, it’s finished.

How to preserve and extend the life of CBD oil

For users who want to extend the life of their CBD products as long as possible, there are some simple strategies to help keep it fresh. Using good storage practices can prolong the life of your CBD, even if we can’t be sure exactly how long the CBD will retain its full therapeutic strength.

Avoid heat, light and air

First and foremost, keep your CBD away from the elements as much as possible. Heat, light and oxygen degrade both the carrier base and the cannabidiol in CBD products. You don’t have to be obsessive about your CBD. Just remember to:

  • Keep CBD products in a cool, dark place, like a pantry or basement
  • Avoid humidity and light—especially direct sunlight
  • Keep caps or lids on tight when not in use
  • If it tastes or smells bad, throw it out

Leaving any CBD product on a table in a sunny room, in a cabinet next to a stove, or in a car will speed the aging process. That’s the exact opposite of what you want to do, so avoid those situations!

If you buy a variety of CBD products because you want lots of choices, try to keep the oldest ones at the front of the shelf and be conscious of the dates.

How long can you make CBD last?

Most regular CBD users think that proper handling and storage practices will double the life of CBD from the manufacturer’s one-year recommendation to two years. Beyond that, it’s questionable.

Some people think that refrigerating CBD oil tinctures or e-juice will make them last longer. If you try that, remember that cold temperatures make the different components in the oil and e-liquid separate, which means you must bring the cold liquid back to room temperature slowly and shake it vigorously before using it. Do not heat the liquid to speed up the process! Heat is always the enemy of CBD and e-liquid products.

Avoid refrigeration also for CBD-rich hemp or marijuana flower. Cold makes the trichomes (the oil glands that contain the CBD) break off, which makes the bud less potent. Flowers of high-CBD hemp strains store well in a tight jar kept in a dark place. If you’re going to store it for more than a few weeks, consider using a humidity-control packet like Boveda. If you see anything like mold growing on your cannabis flower, discard it.

The bottom line is that most people use CBD long before it’s at risk of spoiling. If you take precautions to keep your CBD products away from heat, light and air—and stay aware of the dates on the bottles and packages—your CBD is likely to maintain its freshness and potency for about two years.

CBD oil and other CBD products like vape juice and edibles have expiration dates, but how long does CBD last under optimal storage conditions?