Does the Expiration Date on Cannabis Products Really Matter?

Does the Expiration Date on Cannabis Products Really Matter?

Dear Jane, Last year I got a fat load of cannabis products from a very generous friend of mine, but I wasn’t feeling super adventurous at the time and let them all sit in my cupboard. Just the other day, I broke out the stash and tried this thc/cbd hybrid tincture for sleep, and it’s like my favorite product ever. But I just realized it expired several months ago. Does this expiration date actually matter? Or is it like the expiration date on a jar of pickles? —Winnie the pothead



Everyone needs a good stoner friend. Getting hand-me-down products is like recycling—it’s good for everyone. So, there you have it, being a pothead means that you are an advocate for the environment. You grow gurl.

A wise man named Ron Swanson from the Parks and Recreation Department of Pawnee, Indiana once said, “Those dates are arbitrary. They’re like those expiration dates that the government forces companies to put on yogurt and medicine."

That’s the general approach I take to expiration dates on cannabis products. If you’re still getting a legit effect from it, I’d keep using it.

Now depending on how lenient you like to be with your food’s expiration dates, you may want to check the ingredients list on food-like products for legitimately perishable elements. But so long as it’s pure weed, or something like an alcohol-based tincture, yeah, it’s gonna be more like a jar of pickles.

It kind of comes down to a supply and demand issue, too. I have to drive 3–4 hours to my nearest dispensary. If I have a cart that says it expired in 2020, you’re damn right I’m gonna hit that before I get in my car and cross state lines.

What’s the worst that could happen when smoking expired green? You don’t get high? (Really, I’m pretty sure that is the worst that could happen.)

It’s a risk I’d be willing to take.