If you are growing hemp, you will have to adopt appropriate storage techniques in order to keep them healthy after the harvest. There are standard storage methods specially developed from years of processing and growing for hemp fiber, seed, and grain. Some countries, such as Canada, are still considering revising these methods and come up with better ones to keep store the harvest better. As hemp has become legal in the United States, more and more people are thinking about growing it.
For many decades, the method of storing hemp flower and the entire plant was relatively uncharted territory. It is because the industry is extremely new, and people are trying to figure it out one step at a time.
Hemp crops can quickly go bad if it’s stored in an improper condition, mainly because it’s suspectable to weather, ultraviolet light, temperature, and humidity. When the crop is exposed to any of these elements, you can face several issues, including cannabinoid potency degradation and mold problems.
With people showing interest in hemp cultivation increasingly, everybody is trying to come up with storage techniques that could help keep the yield safe.
When it comes to harvesting and storing hemp for extracting CBD, there are majorly two schools of thought that exist.
Few companies and farmers aim to keep the buds high in quality with a high-terpene profile. They do so by taking care of hemp in a way that is similar to marijuana. It involves hand-harvesting of the hemp flower, which is considered to be a costly and labor-intensive method.
Other companies choose to go with biomass harvesting for extracting the whole plant, making it a quick harvest. It is done by rolling up the CBD hemp plants that are short-statured into round bales, quite similar to how hemp straw and fiber along with other crops like wheat straw and alfalfa are stores and harvested.
Some companies are also known for implementing both the methods, after which they are stored inside large canvas sacks that are used for wheat and corn. The sacks are known to be about 5 feet wide and 4 feet tall. The sacks can store approximately 1000 pounds of grain, but hemp isn’t packed so tightly because it will require better airflow. Biomass and flower have to be dried and cured differently, but can be stored similarly, even in the same building.
If you are interested in purchasing high-quality CBD products, IHF is one of the well-known suppliers that takes premium measures to store hemp.
Inspiration from Tobacco
Tobacco barns are also where hemp is stored. In such places, people make use of shipping containers for storing hemp. These contain have forced air unites to take away the moisture out of the hemp plants. Each of the farms is known to have about 20 barns, and each of them has the potential to hold harvested plants that are an acre’s worth.
Hemp plants are placed in environmentally controlled barns where they can be dried for three to five days uniformly. The process might be quite similar to tobacco, but it requires less technique and time because hemp is not as dense as tobacco. Also, the hemp flowers are the end product, unlike tobacco leaves. When the plant is dry, removing the flowers become very easy as compared to when the plant has been harvested freshly.
Tobacco barns are considered to be the best on-farm solution for drying the product. It is because a lot of humidity can be kept out because of the ability to force air inside the positive pressure in these barns.
When you focus on the whole-plant biomass rather than only the hemp flower, the harvesting and storing become way easier and simpler. Hemp farmers have been baling hemp fiber and straw for several decades. But the method could be utilized to cost-effectively and quickly take off the shorter hemp plants from the outdoor production fields for keeping the material for the short-term.
Bales can be dried and then wrapped in plastic for protecting the biomass from any kind of temperature fluctuation, ultraviolet rays, and humidity.
When the bales are tightly wound and kept dry, oxygen-free, and in the dark, it could stay great for a period of 6 to 12 months. If you want it to stay better for any longer than that, you will have to separate the biomass, pelletize and deseed it.
All kinds of hemp are suspectable to mold if the plants aren’t dried properly and stored in environmentally controlled spaces with low humidity. Humidity is significant as moisture accelerates the growth of mold, which can result in ochratoxins and aflatoxins.
Storing hemp may seem tricky, but if the protocol is followed adequately, it could give the results that you need.