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Does CBD oil expire? Shelf-life of CBD oil & 5 top tips for storing your CBD

Does CBD oil expire and if so how long does it take? In this article we show you how to tell if your oil has gone bad and how to store it for best shelf-life.
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Just how long does CBD last in the back of the cupboard?

If you’ve just found a bottle of CBD oil at the back of the cupboard that you’d forgotten you had, then you’re probably wondering “how long has that been there?”, leading you onto a more important question… “does CBD oil expire?”.

In this article, we’ll answer some of the most common questions about CBD oil expiration and offer some top tips on how to store your CBD oil to ensure it retains its quality and potency.

Does CBD oil expire?

Yes, CBD oil can expire. Like other consumable products, CBD oil has a limited shelf life and will eventually go bad. Over time, the compounds in the oil can break down and lose their potency, which can reduce its effectiveness. Factors such as exposure to air, light, and heat can all speed up this process.

That’s why it’s essential to store CBD oil correctly and to use it before its recommended expiration date. Typically, CBD oil can last up to two years if it’s stored properly. However, it’s always best to check the product’s label for specific information on expiration dates, as well as storage recommendations.

Good CBD oil
Fresh clean CBD oil from a tincture bottle

How do you know if CBD oil has gone bad?

One of the first signs that CBD oil has gone bad is a change in color or texture. If the oil has become darker or cloudy, or if there are chunks or sediment in the bottle, it may be past its prime. Another way to tell if CBD oil has gone bad is to smell it. If the oil has a rancid or sour smell, it is likely it’s no longer any good.

In addition to these visual and olfactory cues, there are other signs that CBD oil has expired. For example, it may have a weaker or inconsistent effect because the potency of the CBD can also decrease over time, leading to a less effective product.

How long does it take CBD oil to expire?

Generally-speaking, CBD oil will last for 12-24 months from the date of manufacture if stored properly but the shelf life of CBD oil can vary depending on several factors, including the quality of the oil, the method of extraction, and the storage conditions.

Most CBD oils will have an expiration date on the bottle, which can give you an idea of when it is likely to expire. However, the expiration date is not always a reliable indicator of when the oil will go bad.

What happens if you take expired CBD oil?

Consuming expired CBD oil is unlikely to cause you harm, but it may have a different taste or texture than when it was fresh. The CBD may also have lost some of its potency over time, leading to a weaker or inconsistent effect.

In general, it is best to use CBD oil before the expiration date or within a few months of opening the bottle to ensure maximum freshness and effectiveness.

CBD storage: 5 top tips for storing your CBD oil

Proper storage of CBD oil is crucial to maintaining its quality and potency.

High-quality CBD oil is typically packaged in medical-grade, airtight, dark glass bottles to minimize light exposure and help with temperature control. The lid also prevents excess oxygen and contaminants from affecting the oil’s freshness and accelerating its expiration.

In addition to using the right container, here are some other tips to preserve your CBD oil’s freshness:

  1. Keep your CBD oil in its original packaging to avoid unnecessary exposure to air and always make sure to close the bottle properly after use to prevent air from getting in.
  2. Store the oil at room temperature, typically around 60 to 70Β°F (16 to 21Β°C). Heat can cause the oil and cannabinoids to degrade, leading to a loss of potency over time. Keep it in a place where the temperature is consistent and doesn’t fluctuate, avoiding potential sources of excess heat or cold, such as windows, radiators, air conditioners, and stoves.
  3. Store your CBD oil in a dark place away from light, such as a pantry, cupboard, or closet. Like heat, sunlight can also cause degradation to the oil and cannabinoids.
  4. Use a clean dropper or spoon every time you take CBD oil to prevent bacteria and other contaminants from entering the bottle.
  5. Label the container with the date of purchase. This will help you keep track of when you purchased the oil and when it might expire.

If you’ve made your own CBD oil (learn how to make CBD oil here), then make sure you:

  1. Use an airtight container as oxygen can also cause the oil to degrade over time. An airtight container will help to prevent oxidation, which can cause the oil to become rancid and lose its effectiveness.
  2. Avoid plastic containers as they can contain harmful chemicals that can leach into your CBD oil over time. Instead, use (dark) glass containers or stainless steel stash jars to store your oil.
  3. Label your container with the date you made your CBD oil so you can keep track of its potential expiry date.

Frequently asked questions

Depending on what type of oil your CBD extract is delivered in and other ingredients it includes, your CBD oil may have a shorter or longer shelf-life. So let’s take a look at some of the most common ingredients and how they might effect the expiry date of your CBD oil.

Does MCT oil expire?

Many CBD extracts are delivered in MCT oil, so you should also know that MCT oil can expire over time. MCT oil has a shelf life of about 1-2 years when stored in a cool, dark place away from sunlight and heat. It may have gone bad if it smells rancid or has a bad taste.

Do essential oils expire?

Essential oils can also expire or go bad over time. The shelf life of essential oils will depend on several factors, including the type of oil, the storage conditions, and the quality of the oil. In general, essential oils will last for 1-3 years if stored properly in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight, heat, and moisture.

Can coconut oil go bad?

Yes, coconut oil can go bad over time, especially if it is not stored properly. Like other consumable goods, the shelf life of coconut oil will depend on several factors, including the quality of the oil, the method of extraction, and the storage conditions.

In general, coconut oil will last for 2-5 years if stored properly in a cool, dark place, away from direct sunlight and heat. The easiest way to tell if a coconut oil product has gone bad it if it smells rancid or has an off taste. 

Does olive oil expire?

Yes, olive oil can expire due to exposure to light, heat, and air. Proper storage in a cool, dark place in an airtight container can extend shelf life. Unopened, olive oil usually lasts up to 2 years but after it’s been opened the shelf-life is reduced to between 6 months and a year. Discard if the oil smells off or has an unpleasant taste.

Generally-speaking, no matter what oil your CBD extract is suspended in, if something doesn’t taste right, then it’s probably gone bad and should be discarded.

What about other CBD products?

Can CBD edibles expire?

Yes, CBD edibles can expire or go bad over time, just like any other food product. The shelf life of CBD edibles will depend on several factors, including the type of edible, the ingredients used, and the storage conditions. In general, CBD edibles will last for 6-12 months if stored properly.

What happens if you eat expired gummy edibles?

Like with CBD oil, eating expired CBD gummies is unlikely to cause harm, but they may have a less pleasant taste or texture than when they were fresh. You should also manage your expectations on how well they will work as the CBD may have lost some of its potency over time, leading to a weaker or inconsistent product.

In general, it is best to consume CBD edibles before the expiration date or within a few months of opening the package to ensure freshness and maximum effectiveness.

Summary

Most CBD users take their CBD regularly meaning expiration isn’t usually a problem, but if you have just found a bottle at the back of your cupboard, then it’s understandable that you wouldn’t want to waste it.

The long and short of it is; taking an expired CBD oil won’t necessarily do you any harm, but it is best to use it within the first year of buying or opening it to ensure you’re receiving the maximum benefits.

Store your CBD oil in a cool, dark place where the temperature is unlikely to fluctuate too much (I usually keep mine in my bathroom cupboard above my sink). And use up your older products first to ensure they don’t have a chance to go out of date.

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