SHOULD FLOWER HAVE A STRONG SMELL BEFORE YOU GRIND IT?Julie Fulton @ 2019-11-29 12:44:33 -0600
Short answer, no. But do you know why? (hint: it has to do with cannabis terpenes!)
Think of an orange. Before you peel it, how does it smell? You can pick up just a hint of its “orangyness” from its dimply exterior. But that mouth-watering citrus scent is strongest when you tear into the peel.
Releasing those luscious citrus terpenes tells you that that peel did its job. The peel shielded the good stuff inside the orange, keeping it juicy and fresh—and vitamin-rich—until it’s consumption time. Same with cannabis.
Terpenes are the aromatic essential oils in cannabis. They reside with cannabinoids in the mushroom-shaped glands called trichomes—those delicate, resinous outer “hairs” of the flower. Since terpenes and cannabinoids are more or less what consumers pay for when they purchase cannabis flower, almost all of that flower’s market value is contained in this highly exposed and intensely fragile part of the plant.
Trichomes are the source of the therapeutic, medicinal and recreational compounds of this healing plant.
DO YOU SMELL FLOWER TO SEE IF CANNABIS TERPENES ARE FRESH?
Most consumers—and some cultivators—open a container and stick their noses in to inhale the flower’s strong aroma. Truth is, a strong smell doesn’t prove flower is fresh. Quite the contrary – that loud nose hit you get when you open a jar or bag of cannabis is actually the smell of terpenes evaporating off of your flower. When stored without a terpene shield in a container, flower immediately starts to degrade.
90% of flower is stored too dry, according to a 2018 product analysis conducted by Boveda with third-party testing.
Most flower is stored for upwards of two months before it’s sold or consumed. By the time it reaches the end consumer, most cannabis sold in regulated environments in the U.S. and Canada is far too dry.
4 BAD THINGS THAT HAPPEN TO FLOWER WHEN IT’S STORED WITHOUT Boveda:
- The terpenes, whose flavors and aromas provide a critical part of the experience, are lost forever.
- Precious THC and THCA oxidize, shift to CBN, and lose their efficacy.
- Trichomes become brittle and break off.
- Water weight evaporates, reducing the flower’s dollar value.
CANNABIS TERPENES IN GROUND FLOWER SMELL 5X STRONGER WITH BOVEDA
Ground vs Unground Smell Intensity Independent Lab Results, Terpene Smell Intensity Study, St. Croix Sensory, Inc.
- The aroma of freshly ground flower stored with Boveda is 5x stronger than flower stored without Boveda
- Dry ground sample has almost the same smell intensity as unground dry sample (terpenes evaporated without monolayer protection)
- Monolayer of water molecules begins to form around 55% and gets even thicker at 62%
WHY STORING FLOWER IN AN AIRTIGHT CONTAINER IS JUST THE BEGINNING
Think closing up flower in a jar, CVault®, bin or bag is all that you need to do?
An airtight container doesn’t protect trichomes from losing moisture. Cannabis terpenes merely evaporate into the headspace of the container. You have to maintain consistent relative humidity (RH) in the range of 55-65% in that container to keep flower from degrading.
Only Boveda enables any container to preserve terpenes—not slowly destroy them. Storing flower with Boveda shields trichomes in a monolayer of moisture. Boveda’s monolayer of moisture blocks the harmful effects of degradation, oxidation and evaporation in stored flower.
That’s why Boveda is known as the original terpene shield.
Boveda’s Terpene Shield creates a monolayer of moisture, which reduces terpene losses.
The monolayer of moisture is a protective shield that allows flower to achieve equilibration with its surrounding air. In a cannabis container, maintaining relative humidity (RH) between 55–65% keeps flower within that range, too. This dramatically slows evaporation.
And with sufficient water molecules in the container’s headspace, terpenes have little wiggle room. Thus, they remain safely tucked inside the trichome.
Boveda’s Terpene Shield creates a monolayer of moisture, which blocks over oxidation.
Water contains only about 3% oxygen while the surrounding environment is made up of about 21% oxygen. Remember, it’s oxygen that causes terpenes to deteriorate and triggers the loss of THC.
So minimizing flower’s direct contact with too much oxygen helps trichomes preserve its terpenes, THC and possibly other cannabinoids.
Well-hydrated flower drops fewer trichomes.
When harvested cannabis is too dry, trichomes become brittle and fragile, breaking off and settling at the bottom bin, jar or package. These lost trichomes will never be recovered (even if the flower is rehydrated).
Keeping the atmosphere surrounding flower in the 55-65% RH range protects flower as it moves along the supply chain. A monolayer of moisture shields delicate trichomes, so they can better protect themselves against damage. So trichomes are less likely to drop off as they’re handled during curing, storage, transport and packaging.
HOW TO GET AND KEEP FLOWER IN THAT RH SWEET SPOT
Fortunately, cultivators can easily tackle moisture evaporation with 2-way humidity control solutions designed to maintain stable optimal RH in containers and packages.
But not all humidity control solutions are the same, or effective. There are a number of products available that tout the ability to maintain a given humidity level. Issues arise, however, when the moisture level surrounding stored flower fluctuates. Effective humidity control solutions need to respond to these changes by giving off, as well as absorbing moisture.
HOW BOVEDA SHIELDS CANNABIS TERPENES TO PRESERVE AROMA
Cultivators use Boveda to precisely stabilize the RH level in cannabis containers. Only the saturated salt solution developed and patented by Boveda is proven to protect cannabis through these changes in moisture.
Boveda is the only 2-way humidity control technology that uses natural saltwater formulations in a vapor-phase osmosis membrane. This membrane adds or reduces pure water vapor as needed to maintain a constant, predetermined RH level in the storage container.
This saltwater solution creates a monolayer of purified water molecules that naturally coats the trichomes and shields precious terpenes from evaporating into your container. Using Boveda also results in a stable level of moisture weight in cannabis flower.
Unlike any other product, Boveda also takes flower to the precise level needed to protect flower from mold growth.
WHY THE PROOF IS IN THE GRIND
So if the aroma of your bud is strong hours or days before you consume it, there are issues. It means the trichomes have started deteriorating and terpenes have evaporated, so they won’t be available later during consumption. However, when you grind a bud whose trichomes have been perfectly preserved in a monolayer of moisture by Boveda, you’ll release robust aroma. Terps saved. Life is good.
Boveda. The Original Terpene Shield.
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