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What Happens When CBD Products Expire?

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You may have noticed that your CBD products, whether it’s a CBD oil tincture, a pack of gummies, or an e-liquid, will always have a ‘best before’ date on the label. But what exactly happens to the CBD after they expire? Well, it’s slightly different for each different product. In this article, we will explain what happens when each of these CBD products expires and how you can ensure you preserve their shelf life for as long as possible. 

What Happens When CBD Oils Expire?

Most CBD oils will have a shelf life of about 1-2 years. However, after this date, they are not going to be necessarily harmful (as long as you have bought a high-quality product from a reputable manufacturer!) 

Instead, the CBD will start to lose its potency. This is because, after time, the cannabinoids start to break down so they can no longer function as well in the body. So basically, an older or expired CBD oil will be less effective at providing you with the therapeutic benefits of CBD. 

In addition to this, the smell and flavour of the CBD oil may begin to change. This is quite a good way to identify if the oil is past its best if you don’t have access to the expiry date, for whatever reason. The flavour and smell can go from that earthy hemp aroma to a more skunky aroma. Plus, the oil may become more cloudy and thick, or even change in colour.

Although an expired oil won’t make you unwell, it’s best just to get rid of it and buy a new one. It won’t be very pleasant or effective using an expired CBD tincture.

It’s also important to note that these effects can happen sooner if the CBD oil is stored improperly. You should always keep your oils in a cool, dry, dark place, like a kitchen cupboard. You should also ensure that the cap is always tightly screwed on and the bottle is placed upright. These simple steps will help to preserve your CBD quality for as long as possible. 

What Happens When CBD Gummies Expire?

When it comes to edibles like CBD gummies, it’s slightly different from CBD oils since the product is technically a food. CBD gummies will usually have a shelf life of about 1 year but are best when consumed within 6-9 months. 

The same thing will happen to the CBD as we explained with the oils – the cannabinoid will break down and lose potency meaning the gummies are less effective. Also, the flavour of the CBD may change which could ruin the gummy taste. 

In addition to this, CBD gummies will begin to dry out and go hard after their expiration date, just like any gummy sweet would. They probably won’t go ‘bad’ in the sense that they could make you unwell, but they won’t be very pleasant to eat. 

In order to prevent your CBD gummies from going unpleasant before their expiration, ensure you store them in a cool, dry, dark place in a tightly sealed container. You want to minimise warmth and moisture as much as possible, but don’t store them in the fridge (unless the specific storage instructions state otherwise). 

What Happens When CBD E-Liquids Expire?

CBD e-liquids are quite similar to oils when it comes to expiration. With most CBD e-liquids, you could still safely use it shortly after the expiration date, but there’s not really much point. The potency and strength of the CBD will deteriorate over time, so it won’t be as effective as it should be.

Also, with e-liquids, the flavour is very important – vaping a nasty flavour is pretty grim. After the expiration date, the flavourings in the CBD e-liquid will deteriorate as well as the skunkiness of the old cannabinoids beginning to take over. So, vaping an old e-liquid would probably be quite unpleasant!

The storage guidance for CBD e-liquids is the same as with the other products. Store it in a cool, dry, dark place with the cap tightly screwed on in an upright position. When we say ‘cool’, we mean somewhere like a kitchen cupboard, away from sources of heat. Don’t store the CBD e-liquid in the fridge or anywhere too cold, otherwise the CBD could begin to crystallise. 

Final Thoughts

It seems the general trend when CBD products expire is that the CBD and other cannabinoids lose their potency. There is not much point using a CBD product after expiration, but it won’t likely cause any harm. You are best off simply buying a fresh, new product.

Avoid this happening to your products pre-expiration by storing them properly. Keep your CBD products in a cool, dry, dark place in a tightly sealed, upright container. Limit the air and heat exposure, and your products should last for as long as possible! 

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