New and Noteworthy Fresh Flowers: December 1st, 2021

Do you ask to see the packaged date on cannabis containers? A recent blog post on Instaleaf.ca and the subsequent LinkedIn conversation got me thinking about fresh flower.

At the beginning of legalization, I frequently got the question: “When was it packaged?”

I couldn’t blame people. A lot of cannabis at the time was brittle and dry, presented little to no aroma, was browner than green, and yielded a high that didn’t quite seem to match up with the numbers on the labels.

Nowadays, we don’t get the question as often. I hope it’s because our customers know that we keep track of fresh bud and are mindful of new drops. We’re also up front if there’s a price drop due to an older package date. We also pride ourselves on keeping our inventory in stock for no longer than 4 weeks.

Why does freshness matter?

People tend to compare cannabis flower to wine and tobacco. However, this comparison isn’t quite fair: there are ways to ensure that wine will always have a given amount of alcohol, and there are enough additional ingredients to cigarettes that maintaining a constant nicotine level is manageable.

How fresh is your weed?

Drying fresh cannabis flower doesn’t put it into stasis: rather, by drying flower and then testing it, growers get an accurate measure of the cannabinoid contents for a given sample on that day, at that time, under very specific conditions – so specific, in fact, that each lab will have their own standard operating procedures and types of tests used. 

This does not take into account the natural ageing processes of cannabis, which includes – but is not limited to – degradation of THC (the intoxicating component of cannabis) into CBN (a non-intoxicating component of cannabis). For consumers, that could be felt as a short burst of intoxicating effects followed by a sense of fatigue.

This ageing process (it would be more accurate to call it decarboxylation but I can’t pronounce that word, so I try and avoid it) can be mitigated by a few factors, including proper humidity levels, an airtight seal and opaque packaging. 

Oh, and proper curing.

Do certain containers keep freshness better?

I’ve had beautiful fresh bud in glass jars, and I’ve had dry bud in glass jars. I’ve had squishy bud in bags, and I’ve had crumbly bud in bags.

In the past 3 years of purchasing cannabis on the regulated market, I’ve come to rely more on growers than packaging to gauge how fresh the flower might be. While the Black Cherry Punch by Violet Tourist we have was packaged in March 2021, I feel confident that the experience, flavour and bag appeal will still be as wonderful now as it was back in May when we first opened a package from this lot. I never hesitate to offer Good Buds, regardless of packaging date, because their processes have ensured that the flower remains beautiful and squishy consistently. Tommy’s Craft Collection only has the Cherry ’47 flower at the moment, but that bud was so sticky, I had to scrape it off my finger after my “squish” test.

What about packaging date?

If properly stored, cannabis can easily last a year within acceptable ranges of cannabinoid levels and will continue to exude “fresh flower” vibes.

To be honest, I always look at THC levels on a container with a grain of salt: I see it as the mean value for the possible range of the bud I’m about to toke. 

It’s also important to note that Health Canada doesn’t require a harvest date, merely a packaging date.

This matters because some companies use old bud, add some new bud in, and repackage the product with a brand new package date. We do not call that fresh.

How do you know it's fresh? When you know what the harvested date and the packaged date is.
Shout out to Crystal Cure for including harvest & packaged date. (And thanks for permission to use the picture)

Something that’s new (and exciting to me) is that some companies are starting to put harvest date in addition to packaging date. This kind of information is critical in understanding how a grower treats their flowers, what kind of curing time is used and how much they value transparency. 

Storing your cannabis at home

Packaging also plays a key role in keeping terpenes and trichomes unaffected. Plastic packaging can release minor static shocks, which can cause terpenes to burn off. When storing your cannabis at home, always choose glass packaging, and store away from light. If you don’t smoke your bud too quickly, keep a sterile two-way humidity pack in your container to keep your bud feeling fresh.

New Bud: Frozen Lemons by Msiku

(Pronounced m-see-goo, by the way.)

I have been waiting for this indigenous-owned brand to be available in Alberta for a while now, due to all my lurking on Reddit. I have heard nothing but amazing things about them, across the board: cultivar selection, flavour, fresh flower and bag appeal.

And when we noticed their sativa dominant Frozen Lemons had landed in Alberta, we had to grab some.

And it’s always such a pleasure to find one big nug you have to gently pull out of the container. In fact, the nug was so tall, I had to cut the bottom off a bit so it could fit in our display jar!

The aroma is wonderful too: herbacious and citrusy, with a touch of pepper. Most importantly though: optimal sticky icky. I cannot wait to roll this lady – and she’s a great candidate for rice paper! An interesting choice for wake and bakes, I’d still probably save it for brunch or early afternoon, where a jolt of energy could add a bit of oomph to your step.

Fresh and roll worthy flower. One big nug, and two mids to complete it.

Hang dried, hand trimmed. And while there might be more leaf than I typically like to see, these sugarleaves are COATED in trichomes and amazingly frosty. Further, my eighth was rather generous. Gotta love craft.

“IT ISN’T ONE THING THAT MAKES THE PRODUCT SUPERIOR, IT IS OUR FOCUS ON THE ENTIRE PROCESS”

Msiku Website

About Frozen Lemons:

  • Sativa dominant
  • Lineage: Freezer Burn x Lemon Fire
  • Cannabinoids: THC dominant
  • Min THC: 19%
  • Max THC: 24%
  • Max CBD: 0.1%
  • Terpene Profile: Terpinolene, Limonene, Caryophyllene
  • Container: Plastic container
  • Humidity Pack: Round Integra pack, 55 RH

Fan Faves: Sky Cuddler Double Kush by Reef

Honestly, I don’t know where to start.

Maybe with the terpenes, listed right on the package? While you might confuse the aroma with the sweet-dankness of myrcene, the top terpene is actually farnesene – a terpene not frequently found in cannabis with aromas of apple or pear peel – which lends a ripe melon nose initially. It follows up with slight tartness. 

And tartness is really such a great word for this product. Fans of Pink Kush would do well to pack this lady in a bowl. Even if you aren’t going to sleep, this is a fun one to keep near the bed.

On the topic of feeling good, the packaging is made from 100% reclaimed ocean plastic, and is fully recyclable in Edmonton.


By the way, if you’re like me and you keep your eyes open for womxn in weed, then I’m happy to tell you that Reef is female led.

Did I mention they use organic practices?

Yeah, I know. I’m surprised we still have some in stock too.

About Sky Cuddler Double Kush:

  • Indica dominant
  • Lineage: Pure Kush, Sour Diesel, Purple Urkel, Black Afghani, Skywalker, Hindu and Big Red (Note that Pure Kush was crossed multiple times over the generations before Sky Cuddler Double Kush came to be)
  • Cannabinoids: THC dominant
  • Min THC: 20%
  • Max THC: 25%
  • Max CBD: 0.1%
  • Total Terpene content: 3.02%
  • Terpene Profile: Farnesene, Caryophyllene, Limonene (Listed on package)
  • Container: Reclaimed Ocean Plastic, Recyclable
  • Humidity Pack: None

2 Comments

  1. Nancy Roberts

    Love your Weednesday blog–always informative and a pleasure to read!!

    • Ok, so this is going to sound ridiculously silly but I honestly can’t thank you enough for taking the time to comment. And to thank you for reading. Oh my gosh, you made my day. My week. Actually, I’ll just go ahead and call this the best Christmas present you could’ve given me.

      Thank you SO much.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *