How to Judge the True Quality of your Cannabis
Currently, one of the driving factors in terms of “price” when it comes to cannabis flower is – potency. The higher the potency of a bud, the more it will cost. However, “potency” isn’t an indicator of quality. You can still have a shitty-highly-potent-bud.
In fact, when a consumer is solely looking for “potency” as the main metric for purchase, it often showcases their ignorance in what makes a cannabis bud actually good.
In this article, we will be going through some of the things you should be looking at when selecting a bud. Of course, potency does play an important role when making your decisions, however, just like with a good wine…knowing what to look for will make the consumption experience all that more pleasurable.
Okay – Let’s Start with Potency
What is the “best potency” for your tokes? Well, the answer to this is highly subjective. For experienced cannabis consumers, potency can play a significant role in their decision making process. This is due to their higher tolerance to THC, meaning that they need higher doses to…well, get higher.
A novice or moderate cannabis consumer might not do so well with a bud that’s got 33% THC in it. Even experienced consumers find 30%+ percent on the “high end” flower-potency range. The average consumer prefers to smoke weed that ranges between 12%-20%. Medical patients tend to prefer cannabis with a moderate-high and usually like 1:1 CBD to THC ratios in their cannabis.
Nonetheless, this is a highly subjective metric that is solely in the “eye of the toker”.
The Seedless Standard
Another very important metric when it comes to determining the quality of your cannabis comes down to the presence of seeds, or rather the lack thereof. We call this the “seedless standard” because it’s highly improbable that you’d ever find a seed from a bud purchased in a dispensary.
This is because growers understand that when there are seeds, there’s less THC. Once the cannabis plant starts to produce seeds, it stops THC production. Thus, most commercial (dispensary weed), will never have the prevelance of seeds. They make sure to remove male plants from harvests or use feminized seeds or clones to ensure that there will be no seeds.
Street weed, might still contain some seed. If this is the only source of weed you have, the “amount of seed” will be a factor to consider. The higher the prevalence of seed, the lower the quality of cultivation, which lowers the quality of the weed.
These days, minor cannabinoids are becoming more important within the overall experience. Having a potent weed with a weak terpene profile is not “good weed”. The terpene profile will modify the subjective experience of the consumer, as terpenes interact with THC and other minor cannabinoids.
Terpenes, flavonoids and so forth are also responsible for the odor and flavor of the plants, as well as has a direct impact on “how it hits you”.
As our research in this area expands, we’ll eventually be able to modify terpene interactions with the cannabinoids, to create designer trips. For now, a consumer will be able to test the terpene profile through smell and taste.
You’re not supposed to only smoke weed to get high, but to enjoy the taste, smell and effect of the terpenes as well.
Another important element (you should always inquire about) is curing. Throughout my personal experience, I have run across many “good buds” with “great potential” that was ruined with poor curing techniques.
Good curing takes roughly 2-8 weeks to complete. Two weeks is the bare minimum the crop had to be cured to be even considered “good”. Anything prior to two weeks is still too fresh. I personally like a crop that’s been properly “cured” for at least three weeks, after being dried for about a week to nine days.
While there is no way you can verify whether a strain is what a budtender claims it to be, you also don’t have a reason to doubt them. On the streets, it’s a different story. Nonetheless, understanding the genetics of the strains you are smoking is an important factor. However, it’s a metric not available to people who do not live within a legalized system.
A Combination of All of These Things
As you mature with your cannabis consumption, you can start identifying certain things that you like. After all, you’re the one consuming it and if you know what you like, you can ensure that you always get the best experience with cannabis.
Using the above-mentioned metrics, you can narrow down the type of strains you prefer, the potency and how you like your terpenes.
Good cannabis consumption is like drinking wine, it’s far more nuanced than “how much THC it has”. Train your pallet, find the right combination and truly make cannabis a unique personalized experience.