Decontaminate or sterilize cannabis for healthy consumption

Cannabis Disposal

Remediation or decontamination of cannabis. What is it and why is it important?

Although cannabis has many beneficial properties for medical and recreational users, it also has inherent dangers such as mold and bacteria. Growing cannabis sometimes involves pesticides and the water can be polluted. Most states where cannabis is legal have enacted legislation that requires companies to take tests before they bring their product to market. This, in turn, has created a problem for companies who need to make sure their product is safe and complies with all regulations. What about countries that have not legalized and whose cannabis comes from the streets?

Fortunately, the demand for “pure” or “organic” cannabis has spurred the development of decontamination technology. To better understand decontamination, how it works and why it is important, we have identified several decontamination methods and systems.

What is cannabis decontamination?

A cannabis product can fail contamination tests if it contains dangerous levels of microbial toxins, heavy metals, or pesticides. Of the microbes, the most common is powdery mildew. Other risks: aspergillus or Gram bacteria negative bile tolerant. Both can have a dangerous effect on human health.

To prevent their product from failing tests, companies are turning to different treatment methods that reduce or remove contaminants. Cannabis contaminated with microbes is usually made into concentrates, which is not ideal. Decontamination is important to ensure that a quality product reaches your shelves.

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This is especially true for large producers. Smaller operations generally manage the growing environment more easily, which makes it easier to check the cleanliness of the product. The situation changes for large-scale commercial producers, where contamination is "inevitable".

Despite the dangers of tainted cannabis, some states still do not have legislation requiring decontamination.

Education is essential

No matter if decontamination is required by law, companies should always ensure that their products are clean for the benefit of their consumers.

Consumers must get involved and be informed to consume a good quality and healthy product. Regarding public awareness, independent journalists, regulators and the press play a key role. It starts with educating people about their local laws and sounding the alarm if something goes wrong.

This is the case of our colleague The Cannabist which gives us a simple method of prevention and sterilization regarding hashish or weed. We must remember its antibacterial and antifungal properties. There are currently no claims of the spread of infectious or viral diseases through them. The best thing to do if you go directly to an illegal point of sale is to respect the recommended social distances, put on a mask and gloves. Don't touch anything other than your cannabis. Arrive home, remove and carefully dispose of all packaging, before placing your Cannabis 3 Days in Quarantine. 

What technique to get clean cannabis

You can choose from different decontamination techniques.

Autoclave system

It uses heat and pressure to kill germs. This is an efficient and easy to use option, but it is time consuming and does not allow inventory to be processed. In addition, it increases the risk of mold infestation. Again, it can cause decarboxylation and alter the physical properties of cannabis.

Methods Dry heat

This is one of the cheapest methods, and it also does not have any mold or yeast infestation issues. But, this method would most likely ruin your product.

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Gamma radiation

It reduces microbial growth in plants without affecting potency. This is a fast and safe method that poses no threat to terpenes. However, the ions used can be carcinogenic.

Gas treatment

It is also an inexpensive but time consuming process. The gases used can be toxic to humans if not handled with care. The solution uses USDA / EPA approved ozone gas to destroy any microbial decontamination. This gas also helped preserve the essential ingredients of the plant: terpenes, potency, color and taste.


This method is readily available without the need for chemicals or ions that could degrade the potency of the plant. However, if you don't handle them under proper heating conditions, your product may burn and damage the terpenes. Hence a significant reduction in quality.

Radio frequency

This is an organic and non-toxic method. It can be used on large crops with the same effectiveness. In addition, this treatment is quite fast. Growers will not experience any issues with pot loss or decarboxylation. This is one of the best methods to use for consumer products.

sterilize, decontaminate

to summarize

Maintaining high standards for cannabis products is the need of the hour. Thousands of patients use it for medical purposes. No one can compromise a product meant to save the lives of many people. Decontamination of cannabis is the best possible method to restore the quality and potency of products. After all, anything is better than destroying the entire harvested product. The grower must understand the importance of decontamination, otherwise the supply chain will be drastically disrupted.

Tags : ChampignonDisinfectionmoldPreventionTechnology
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The author weed master

Weed media broadcaster and communications manager specializing in legal cannabis. Do you know what they say? knowledge is power. Understand the science behind cannabis medicine, while staying up to date with the latest health related research, treatments and products. Stay up to date with the latest news and ideas on legalization, laws, political movements. Discover tips, tricks and how-to guides from the most seasoned growers on the planet as well as the latest research and findings from the scientific community on the medical qualities of cannabis.