If you like buying kratom in bulk or loading up on it when there is a sale, you may wonder whether it will still remain fresh and potent by the time you get around to consuming it all. This article aims to answer all your questions about the potential expiration of kratom, how to store it to maximize and retain freshness, and the factors that influence how long it will last.
Does Kratom Expire?
Kratom, being a plant, can expire, naturally, but the fantastic news is that it can take a long time for any negative impact on your kratom as long as it is stored appropriately. As with any biological matter like coffee, spices, and teas, storage is important for the preservation of kratom’s freshness, taste, and quality.
If kratom expires then it will not harm you as long as there is no mold or other contamination. However, it may have weakened effects or a bad taste or smell. Furthermore, there is some speculation that oxygen exposure may degrade mitragynine, one of the primary alkaloids in the kratom plant. This would convert the chemical into a less effective substance; in turn, your kratom would not be as powerful as it was before.
If you do believe that the kratom contains mold, then throw it out immediately. Moldy kratom can make you very sick and when there is visible mold, there are likely contaminants that you cannot see with the naked eye as well.
How Long Does Kratom Last?
Kratom can last a long time, but there are several factors that can affect the length that kratom is safe, potent, and fresh. The strain, how it is stored, the form, light, temperature, container, and quality of the vendor all play a role.
Kratom powder will be good for 1 to 3 months, according to most sources, as long as it isn’t stored in direct sunlight, heat, or moisture. While generally, we would recommend consuming your kratom in this time frame to ensure quality kratom that is safe, it can actually last much longer in many circumstances.
Anecdotal situations show that kratom does not lose much, if any potency, in the first couple of years after it is harvested. In fact, some people claim that their 5-year-old kratom is still as effective as the day they bought it.
Kratom capsules and liquids, like shots and liquid extracts, may have additional concerns. Capsuled kratom is more prone to degradation than powdered kratom because it not only has the kratom element but also involves the gelatin capsules themselves. While these caps are generally fine and stable for storage, they may degrade, albeit slowly. Vegetable glycerin capsules are more vulnerable than other types as well.
Typically, though, capsules are not a problem for long-term storage and sealed kratom liquid is probably okay as well for months or even a year or more. However, opened kratom drinks or shots should be consumed within a day without refrigeration, especially if they do not have alcohol in the solution. This is because the water and moisture content can become contaminated and lead to mold and other unhealthy growth.
High-quality kratom vendors will also offer fresher kratom that is more likely to last a long time without degradation to taste or aroma and the potency will be higher as well. Low-quality kratom is also more likely to be contaminated initially with E. Coli, mold, and heavy metals.
How to Store Kratom
Proper storage of kratom is the key to long-lasting potency and freshness. Knowing the potential problems with some storage methods and how to avoid them can help you keep your kratom fresh for months without losing potency, changing textures or tastes, or becoming contaminated or unsafe.
The main things to keep in mind when storing kratom are sunlight, oxygen, moisture, and temperature. Sunlight can be harmful to many organic products, including kratom. While most of the alkaloids in kratom are very stable, given enough time in direct sunlight they may still lose potency.
Therefore, avoid exposure to sunlight, particularly prolonged exposure for more than a couple of hours at a time. I like to take my kratom with me if I am going to be out for a while and sometimes it is in sunlight in the car or my hand, but whenever possible I avoid this type of situation. Fluorescent lights may also have the same negative effect on kratom.
High temperatures can also destroy some of the alkaloids. This is why you should not use boiling water to make kratom tea. Instead, slightly cooler water works better. However, it is unlikely that you will store kratom at temperatures this high. Still, though, you may want to consider the temperature for long-term storage to avoid a gradual loss of strength.
Cold temperatures are almost certainly not going to harm the quality of your kratom. However, in my experience, cold kratom does taste a little differently, and I do not enjoy it as much as cool or room temperature powder.
If you plan on keeping kratom for more than a few weeks, then oxygen may be an issue as well. Sealed ziplock backs can be good for most storage needs, but if you plan on storing the kratom for longer than 3 months, you will want to reduce the oxygen infiltration even more. Using air-tight containers is enough to do this or sealed mason jars. If you are so inclined, you can also use vacuum-sealed bags.
Finally, the most problematic issue with the storage of kratom is moisture. Moisture allows kratom to become a breeding ground for mold and can also make the kratom taste bad. If you live in a humid climate, just make sure that you store the kratom in a container in a cool area that does not allow for condensation and the accumulation of moisture. If you are worried about moisture, you can also use a silica pack or a few of them to absorb any potential humidity.
While you may think that the coolest, darkest, and safest place to store your kratom long-term is your refrigerator or even your freezer, you should not do this because it is almost certainly going to attract moisture to your kratom. The condensation and moisture are unavoidable for the most part and you are better off storing the product in a closet, drawer, or other less humid location of your home.
Final Thoughts on Kratom Storage and Expiration
There you have it. Kratom can last a long time if you take care of it and store it in a cool, not cold, dark, dry, area of your home. Now that you know, you can go ahead and buy your kratom supply a few months in advance or buy in bulk just to save some money! Plus, if you are in an area with a potential ban on kratom, you can stock up just to be safe.