How Can Packaging Affect Cannabis Shelf Life?


As the laws around cannabis continue to evolve with regard to its legal, recreational use, competition in the industry will only increase. The right packaging can make a cannabis product stand out in a crowded aisle. It also helps to extend the shelf life of the contents for optimal quality and potency. 

As you consider your packaging options, be sure to factor in the effect of packaging on cannabis shelf life and overall condition. 

Benefits of Quality Packaging for Cannabis

Cannabis is a perishable product. Without the right conditions, it will dry out, grow mold or lose potency over time. Proper packaging helps to create the ideal conditions for storage, ensuring that your cannabis product stays fresh and potent for as long as possible. Some of the benefits of quality customized packaging include:

Cannabis Containment

The right packaging simplifies the process of transporting cannabis from one location to another. During transport, packaging protects goods from exposure to the elements, such as extreme temperatures, moisture and sunlight. 

Additionally, cannabis has a powerful scent that doesn’t appeal to everyone. The right container will keep that aroma inside, preventing it from spreading through a delivery truck or storage area. 

Another key benefit of specialized cannabis packaging is loss mitigation, as portioning the product into containers for shipping helps prevent damage or other loss in transit.

Cannabis Protection

Cannabis has a long shelf life, provided it’s protected from certain conditions. High humidity can lead to mold growth while excessively dry conditions can make the flower brittle and reduce its potency. The same is true of warm temperatures (hotter than room temperature) and light exposure. When exposed to air, cannabis can start to break down, or oxidize. 

Packaging that blocks light, prevents oxidation, and controls moisture and temperature levels protects the cannabis from degradation and decay.

Consumer Information

While the specific legal requirements for cannabis packaging labeling vary by state, the goals are usually similar. The packaging should inform the consumer about its contents and provide the following:

  • Product name
  • Plant strain
  • Volume or weight
  • Cannabinoid content
  • THC content
  • Dates and locations of laboratory testing
  • Cultivation date
  • Expiration date

The packaging can also inform the consumer on the best way to store cannabis for a longer shelf life. For example, if the product is packaged in a resealable pouch, the label can instruct the consumer to reseal the pouch after each use. If it’s in glass, the packaging can state that it should be placed in a cool, dark area.  

By law, cannabis packaging needs to contain consumer warnings. The exact warnings vary by state but may include age restrictions, the phrase “habit-forming ingredients,” or advice against use while pregnant or breastfeeding.

Why Cannabis Packaging Matters for Customers

Consumers use cannabis in different ways. Some people use cannabis products daily while others limit their use to weekends or special occasions. In any case, they want a product that’s fresh and at the expected potency each time. Proper packaging ensures the quality of its contents, even months after purchase. 

Packaging quality and function also impact a consumer’s experience with cannabis. If a large number of cannabis gummies are sold in a non-resealable bag, they might dry out or go stale before the individual has a chance to use them all. If a consumer buys cannabis that’s packed in a paper bag and encounters rain on their way home, they might end up with wet flower buds, which can mold quickly. 

Consumers rely on packaging to let them know the best way to store their cannabis and the best-by date for that specific batch. The packaging can suggest that a person put the product in a dry, cool area of the home, away from bright light, to maintain optimal freshness and ensure they get full use of their purchase.

Why Cannabis Packaging Matters for Dispensaries and Stores

When you operate a cannabis dispensary, you need to package your product in a tamper-proof container that prolongs its shelf life and attracts the interest of adult consumers. The ideal packaging for extended shelf life includes glass jars, resealable pouches, tincture bottles and pop-top bottles.  

Choosing the right packaging has a direct impact on your company’s reputation. When you package cannabis products in opaque, resealable bags that keep the product fresh, consumers will return to you because they know they can trust your offerings. They may also recommend your dispensary to others.

Creative packaging is an excellent way to make your items stand out. Cannabis packaging needs to contain essential information as required by regulations, but it’s also an opportunity to promote the product and turn attention into a sale.

Increase shelf life of cannabis with packaging from IPC

Increase the Shelf Life of Cannabis With Packaging Solutions From Innovative Packaging Co.

IPC offers custom packaging that yields a longer shelf life for cannabis while protecting it from harmful elements. Our packaging solutions also help your products stand out from the crowd, giving you an advantage in the rapidly expanding cannabis industry.

Contact us today to learn more about our full-service packaging solutions.