Welcome to our post-harvest series, where we delve into the crucial stage of drying cannabis and curing cannabis. Have you ever experienced a joint that keeps going out or encountered a fresh-looking flower with an off-flavor? These common issues stem from poor post-harvest practices, emphasizing the significance of proper drying and curing techniques. In this series, we will explore the intricate process of post-harvesting cannabis, shedding light on its resemblance to artisanal goods like chocolate, mezcal, and wine. It is during this phase that the true artisans separate themselves from bulk commodity producers.
Defining the Goals
Before we delve into the specifics of drying and curing, it is essential to understand the objectives of the process. It is important to note that the goals may differ depending on the intended market for the cannabis flower. For smokable or dried flower products (such as buds or pre-rolls), the primary purpose of the drying and curing process is to preserve the terpene profile, cannabinoid content, flower structure, color, and moisture content. Achieving these benchmarks ensures that consumers enjoy safe, aesthetically appealing flowers that offer a rich flavor, easy burnability, and a consistent smoking experience.
For cannabis flowers destined for hash and extraction markets, the criteria can vary greatly depending on the type of extract to be produced. For example, live rosins require the preservation of strong terpenes and color, which often necessitates freezing fresh flowers. On the other hand, ethanol extraction fully strips terpenes from the flowers, negating the need for extensive drying and curing to maximize cannabis derived terpene retention. It is important to align the quality, infrastructure, and effort of the drying and curing process with the intended market. Harvesting and drying cannabis can be a challenging and resource-intensive task, making it vital to match the production scale to the available expertise.
Join us in this comprehensive post-harvest series as we explore the intricacies of drying and curing cannabis. From preserving terpene profiles to achieving optimal moisture content, this critical stage truly separates the artisans from the masses. By understanding the market-specific considerations and implementing best practices, cultivators can unlock the potential of their harvested cannabis while ensuring exceptional quality and consumer satisfaction. Stay tuned for the upcoming blog posts in which we delve deeper into the essential aspects of post-harvest techniques.