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How Long Do Pre-Rolls Stay Good?

Joints are beloved for a quick on-the-go sesh with friends since all the hard work of rolling is already done for you. However, you might be a little hesitant to get them gifted in DC without knowing anything about their shelf life or how to store them properly. If you've ever wondered, "how long do pre-rolls stay good?" you're in the right place. Read on to learn how long joints last and how to boost their shelf life with proper storage.

a man holding a pre-rolled cannabis joint on a blue background with text that reads "how long do pre-rolls last? Shelf-life and freshness tips"

What are pre-rolls?

Pre-rolls are pre-made joints that are already packed and rolled, ready for immediate use. They provide a convenient and hassle-free option for people who prefer to avoid rolling their own joints or are looking for a quick and easy way to enjoy their favorite flowers.

Pre-rolls are typically available in various strains, though they can also be rolled with things like kief, cannabis oil, or other concentrates for added potency and flavor. They also come in different sizes, ranging from single-serving joints to larger options for sharing with friends.

Overall, pre-rolls offer convenience, consistency, and an accessible way to enjoy the benefits of cannabis without the need for rolling your own joints.

How long do pre-rolls stay good?

The shelf life of pre-rolls can vary depending on several factors, including the quality of the cannabis and how they are stored. Generally, pre-rolls can stay good for up to a year if stored properly. That's not to say that smoking a super old joint will make you sick, though. You can technically smoke weed no matter how long it is, as long as it's stored properly and isn't moldy.

The main issue is that the cannabinoids and terpenes will begin to break down, so you'll lose potency the longer your joint sits. As the pre-rolls age, the cannabinoids and terpenes naturally degrade, which means their chemical composition can change.

This degradation process can reduce potency, meaning the pre-roll may not have the same strength or psychoactive effects as when it was freshly rolled. Additionally, the flavor profile of the cannabis may also diminish or alter as the terpenes break down. Further, exposure to factors like light, heat, and oxygen can cause the cannabinoids and terpenes in the pre-roll to break down.

Several factors can impact the rate at which the degradation occurs, though. These factors include the specific strain of cannabis used in the pre-roll, how it was cured and processed, and the storage conditions. Different strains may have different chemical compositions and thus degrade at different rates. The curing process, which involves drying and aging the cannabis after harvest, can also affect the stability of the compounds. Finally, storage conditions, such as exposure to heat, moisture, and light, can accelerate the degradation process.

close up photo of a man holding a fully burned joint with a RAW filter.

How to keep your joints fresh

To maximize the freshness and potency of pre-rolls, it's essential to store them in a cool, dry, and dark place. Excessive heat, moisture, and exposure to light can degrade the quality of the cannabis and reduce its potency. Storing pre-rolls in an airtight container or a resealable bag can help protect them from environmental factors.

However, it's worth noting that over time, pre-rolls may experience a gradual loss of potency and flavor due to the natural degradation of cannabinoids and terpenes. The degradation rate can be influenced by factors like the strain, the curing process, and the storage conditions mentioned earlier. Below are a few pro tips for storage to help preserve your pre-rolls until you're ready to use them:

To keep joints fresher for longer and preserve their potency, here are some tips:

  • Store in an airtight container: Transfer your pre-rolls to an airtight container, like a glass or plastic tube or jar, or use a resealable bag. This helps create a barrier against moisture, air, and light, which can accelerate the degradation process. Make sure to squeeze out any excess air before sealing the container to minimize oxygen exposure.

  • Keep them in a cool, dry, and dark place: Heat, humidity, and light can degrade the quality of the cannabis. Store your pre-rolls in a cool area with low humidity, away from direct sunlight or sources of heat. The ideal temperature range is typically around 60-70°F (15-21°C).

  • Avoid excessive handling: Frequent handling of pre-rolls can cause them to become more susceptible to moisture, mold, and damage. Try to handle them as minimally as possible to maintain their integrity.

  • Don't store them in the fridge or freezer: While refrigeration or freezing may seem like a good idea, it can actually introduce moisture and affect the texture and quality of the pre-rolls. Stick to storing them in a cool, dark place instead.

  • Consider using humidity packs: If you live in an area with fluctuating humidity levels, you might consider adding a humidity pack designed for cannabis storage to the container. These packs help regulate and maintain an optimal humidity level, preserving the freshness of the pre-rolls.

  • Avoid storing with strong odors: Cannabis is known for absorbing odors. To preserve the flavor and aroma of your pre-rolls, keep them away from strong-smelling substances, such as perfumes, spices, or cleaning products.

Tips for enjoying a pre-roll

To ensure the best experience, consuming pre-rolls within a few months of purchase is recommended. While they may still be smokeable beyond that timeframe, the overall quality and potency may diminish over time. It's also important to remember that even though smoking a stale joint won't make you sick, mold will. So always take care to store them properly and throw them away when they're past their prime.

If your joint looks good, find a time and place to relax and enjoy your pre-roll without interruptions or time constraints. Using a hemp wick or a high-quality lighter, hold the pre-roll between your thumb and index finger, positioning it at a slight angle with the tip facing upward, and slowly bring the flame toward the tip of the pre-roll. Rotate it as you apply heat, ensuring the flame touches the entire surface area to create a nice, even burn.

Take small, gentle puffs when you first light the pre-roll to help it burn evenly and prevent canoeing. From there, just enjoy! Take your time between inhalations to fully appreciate the flavors and effects of the weed inside. If you're smoking with friends, pass the joint and take turns.

Remember to ash responsibly. Gently tap or flick the ash from the pre-roll to keep it tidy and prevent excessive buildup. Avoid tapping too forcefully, as it may cause the cherry to fall out and waste the weed.

If you can't finish the pre-roll in one session, knock the cherry off and extinguish it gently. Store the remaining portion in an airtight container for later use. Make sure to follow the storage tips mentioned earlier to preserve its freshness.

a photo of LA Dank's Slab Donutz pre-rolls in the Blow De Coco strain on a black background

Get joints delivery in Washington DC

At the end of the day, the answer to "How long do pre-rolls stay good?" is up to a year, as long as you're storing them properly. Ensuring you're storing your pre-rolls in an airtight container away from light, heat, moisture, and oxygen can help keep them fresher for longer. You can still smoke older or dry joints as long as they don't have mold in them, but they may be less potent and flavorful than a fresh joint.

If you're ready to enjoy the convenience of pre-rolls for yourself, you're in the right place. Getting joints delivered in DC nowadays is a breeze compared to the past. Start by browsing our extensive pre-roll menu and opt for a strain or potency level you like, and then place an order for delivery. You can find everything from house pre-rolls to joints infused with kief or other concentrates in a ton of different sizes at Flower Ave.

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