CBD Expiration: How to Understand CBD Expires

CBD (Cannabidiol) is a substance extracted from the cannabis plant. Its recent popularity is due to its several benefits and properties. According to studies, CBD can help with mental health management, anxiety, depression, relaxation, epilepsy and pain relief. It comes in many forms ranging from topical creams and lotions to edible products like CBD oil and CBD gummies.

CBD Expiration

Does CBD Expire?

Yes, CBD does expire. It typically expires within 1-3 years after its manufacturing time. However, CBD’s shelf life is quite long compared to other products. 

What are the CBD ingredients that can expire?

The CBD ingredients that can expire are usually found in CBD oil, CBD gummies and CBD creams. CBD oil’s ingredients are parts of the cannabis plant and hemp oil. These cannabis plant parts are the flower, bud, stems, and leaves. Hemp oil’s shelf life lasts up to 12-18 months. 

The ingredients of CBD Gummies like our ZenBears are mainly cannabinoids, sugar and can depend on the type of CBD gummies (since some CBD gummies are produced from non-allergenic ingredients). Cannabinoids expire in a year, while sugar products (candies) can take up to 2 years. Gummy bears generally also have a shelf life of 12 – 18 months. The ingredients of CBD creams are CBD, coconut oil, beeswax and sometimes, camphor. CBD’s shelf life is fairly long at 1-3 years. Meanwhile, processed coconut oil expires after 18 months. Beeswax does not have an expiry date but it is always better to keep it away from heat. According to Heathline.com, Camphor has a shelf life of 1-3 years. 

What are the Factors on Expiration Dates of CBD?

The factors that affect CBD expiration dates are:

  1. Storage
  2. Packaging
  3. Quality 
  4. Ingredients
  5. Extraction Process

1. Storage 

Where you store your CBD is a crucial factor in how fast or how slow your CBD can expire. Exposure to heat and light can accelerate the expiry of your CBD, similar to how beauty products exposed to heat and light usually expire faster. A recommended tip is to store your CBD in an area that is not too sunny. The correct place to store it would be in a cabinet that is in a room that does not face the sun directly. 

2. Packaging

The right packaging can help make your CBD shelf life last longer. CBD oils, specifically, use amber glass bottles as they help filter UV light. For optimal reasons, a tip for packaging is to store your CBD in an airtight glass container. In the medical industry, Packaging Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) is a standard that is used to evaluate the packaging of a product. Some CBD production companies have started to follow GMP standards regarding their packaging. The incorrect type of packaging would be made of plastic and have a sheer texture. 

3. Quality 

High-quality CBD does not expire fast. The factors that affect the quality of your CBD boil down to the plant, ingredient and production quality of the CBD you use. For purchasing CBD that will last longer, we recommend checking and researching the quality of the CBD product you plan on purchasing so that it will be one that does not expire easily. A high-quality oil would be produced from first-rate hemp and by a reputable CBD production company 

4. Ingredients

Your CBD’s ingredients are a vital factor in its expiry because the ingredients in your CBD product also expire. The ingredients and shelf life influence as well the shelf life of your CBD. For CBD products that are produced with sugar, a tip we have is to consume them within a few weeks. If you wish to ingest your CBD edibles at a later date, then you should freeze them in the refrigerator and check the expiry date stated on the packaging. The things you should look out for in the ingredients are if it has hemp oil or sugar in your CBD product because these can make or break the expiry date of your CBD product. 

5. Extraction Process

There are several ways to extract CBD. The Carbon Dioxide extraction process is considered the gold standard because it utilizes the level of CBD (and other cannabinoids, depending on the type of CBD being produced) being extracted from the plant. Another benefit to the Carbon Dioxide extraction process is it helps keep the compounds stable as well. We recommend purchasing CBD that is produced through the Carbon Dioxide process. For that, you will have to check thoroughly online about the production processes your CBD undergoes. 

How to Understand that CBD Products Expire

Ideally, packaging for products with CBD should come with an expiry date. Due to factors such as labels being taken off and some products do not easily provide their expiry dates, you will have to look for signs that indicate your CBD has reached the limit of its shelf life. Here’s how to understand that your CBD product has expired: 

1. Texture

If your CBD is cloudy, then it usually means that your CBD has been stored at a colder place for storage for a while. Expired CBD’s texture is thick and murky; these are usually signs that your CBD has degraded. 

2. Smell

If your CBD smells bad and funky, then it means that your CBD has expired. CBD usually should smell earthy and not unpleasant. 

3. Taste 

CBD’s taste, particularly, CBD oils, is said to taste “nutty,” “earthy,” or “grassy.” If you taste-test and it is rancid, then it means your CBD has expired. 

What are the Harms of Expired CBD Products?

The harms and risks of expired CBD products are the lack of its therapeutic effects and the risk of breaking teeth. If you use a CBD product that has reached past its prime performance, it will not work because the CBD in it is no longer as potent. In the case of expired CBD gummies, the most risk you can get from eating them is a case of breaking teeth. Expired CBD gummies become very tough and hard to chew. This places you at a risk for broken teeth if you ingest expired CBD gummies. 

Will Expired CBD Products Make You Sick?

No. Expired CBD products cannot make you sick, because the quality of the CBD upon expiry has decreased. If you use expired CBD oil, then you will not experience its prime performance as expiration means the product has lost its potency. You should consider the expiration date when your CBD product no longer tastes as earthy and if you have stored it in a place where it is exposed to UV light and heat. 

Does expired CBD still work?

No. Expired CBD does not work because over time, due to various factors such as packaging, exposure to UV light and heat etc., the expiry date of a CBD product can accelerate. When the expiry date of a CBD product accelerates, the quality and potency of the product decrease. Expired CBD is weak CBD, which means that the cannabinoids in the CBD product have deteriorated and no longer function as well as before. This means that when you use expired CBD, it will no longer work because it is no longer as potent, its ingredients have degraded and the cannabinoids in your CBD product have broken down.