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Freezing Weed: The Pros, Cons And Everything In Between

Last updated: 26 February 2024

freezing marijuana

If you’ve just harvested a bunch of cannabis, you’re probably wondering about the best way to store all those bodacious buds. If properly cured and stored, the shelf life of your stash should be around 2 years. “But wait,” you say, “can’t I just freeze it for later?” This topic has been the subject of heated debate amongst weed growers for decades. Some say freezing buds is a bad idea, others think it’s a great way to store your extra buds. Well, we’re here to break down the pros and cons of freezing cannabis, and you can judge whether or not it’s worth it for yourself!

The Key Elements Of Weed Storage

There are a few basic rules to storing your weed. Our favorite plant isn’t only picky about light, temperature and humidity while growing, but also after being harvested and cured! Once it’s smokable, cannabis likes to be stored in a cool, dark place. If kept somewhere too hot, the flowers will get dry and harsh. If the environment is too humid, your bud is at risk of developing mold or mildew.

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Cold, Dark… What About The Freezer?

can you freeze weed

Because of the above information, you might be thinking, “well, the freezer doesn’t sound like such a bad place for all my extra bud! It’s cold, it’s dark, what could go wrong? Can marijuana be frozen?” Well, freezing bud doesn’t really do a whole lot to preserve cannabis. If your bud is already properly cured anyway, it should stay preserved long enough (again, up to 2 years) without you having to worry about freezing it.

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Is It Bad To Freeze Weed? Why?

Sorry to break the news, but you should probably keep your bud out of the freezer. The negatives simply outweigh the positives for home growers. When freezing pot, you could knock off a bunch of trichomes, or worse, render it unhealthy to consume!

The Risk Of Freezer Burn

Even if the cannabis is in an airtight container, oxygen could still become an issue when freezing marijuana. If too much oxygen is introduced, it could cause freezer burn! This could happen, for example, if you reach in for a few buds from your frozen stash. Not only did you just replenish the oxygen, but you also put your weed at risk for mildew.

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The Consequences Of Defrosting Weed

can you freeze marijuana

A real issue with keeping your weed in the freezer is when it needs to come out! It needs to sit and defrost completely before you can handle it, and in that time, the flowers endure drastic temperature and humidity changes. This time period is perfect for mold and mildew to take up residence. Plus, if you don’t let it defrost before touching it, all those frozen, fragile trichomes will fall right off and you’ll be left with completely ineffective bud.

Trichomes Falling Off

That’s right, we said that the trichomes can fall right off! As you may know, the trichomes on cannabis are full of terpenes and cannabinoids like THC. They’re also very fragile, especially when frozen. This means that, if they fall off your buds, not only will the potency decrease but the flavor will also be affected. It’s very easy to knock a bunch off when dealing with frozen marijuana, so understand that it’s pretty risky!

When Freezing Is In Your Favor

There’s actually one instance when freezing cannabis is a good idea! That’s in the case of live resin, a concentrated frozen cannabis product. Live resin is made by flash-freezing fresh bud immediately after harvest, using liquid nitrogen at temperatures of -195°C (-319°F). The terpenes and cannabinoids get extracted with butane or CO2, the solvent gets purged, and ta-da! Concentrate! This process is pretty technical, so it’s best left to the pros. Maybe just go pick up a dab cartridge instead.

storing weed in freezer

If you’re still committed to freezing your weed, at least do it right! Make sure to first follow proper harvest, drying and curing procedures before you think about putting any cannabis in the freezer. Use an airtight container like a vacuum-sealable jar when storing weed in the freezer, since it won’t have any static charge like plastic. Tuck into the coldest corner of the freezer. When you pop into it later, make sure to let the buds thaw out completely before you touch them, because those trichomes will be super fragile!

Or Just Store Your Weed Properly

weed in freezer

Now that you know the shortcomings of freezing weed, take our advice on how best to store your cannabis. You want to store your flowers properly in a cool, dark place. An airtight glass jar is the best container to use rather than anything plastic. Plastic bags can hold a static charge that wicks away trichomes every time you take your bud in and out. Following these rules, you can keep your buds fresh and potent for as long as possible.

The Verdict On Weed In The Freezer

Storing your weed properly outside of the freezer is the best way to preserve everything we love about cannabis. Even after the curing process, cannabis continues to decarboxylate, and that process can be completely shut down if you toss your buds in the freezer. If you just keep it in the right container, you won’t have to worry about such problems.

What are your thoughts on keeping weed in the freezer? Share your opinions with us in the comments below!

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