Safety, odor and labeling are important when deciding where to keep your cannabis
If you surf the Web or watch TV news, chances are you’ve seen the video of a Michigan woman’s dog who, she narrates, “has gotten into our bag of weed.” Baggies, obviously, won’t keep cannabis away from pets — or children. Safe storage is a prime concern for many patients, so we asked some budtenders from local dispensaries to offer their advice. “The best thing you can do is store it in the way you’d store any other medicine,” says Sophia Todd of Alpine Alternative. “You don’t keep your aspirin on the ground! You put it in a bottle, you put it up and you store it away.” Options range from inexpensive and low-tech (i.e. Mason jars on a shelf) to expensive and high-tech (climate-controlled safes). “Your bywords should always be the fewer people that have access, clear labeling, and making sure the people who could possibly come across it have a clear understanding of it,” says Justin Robertson from Two Rivers Wellness, who’s also a registered security guard. “Those really help remove a lot of the dangers.” When choosing containers, a key factor is containing the scent. The odor, says Forrest of Green Solutions, is what draws dogs to marijuana, so “anything that prevents the smell getting out” would work. He recommends airtight glass jars — they’re available clear or darker to shield the cannabis from light (which also affords a measure of privacy). Sophia favors plastic containers with air-seal lids, especially in households with children, because “the last thing you want is a kid grabbing a glass jar and dropping it and getting glass everywhere.” A humidity pack, available with baking supplies, can keep buds from drying out. Whatever vessel you choose, place it high up, out of reach. For products that come in their own safe packaging, such as tinctures, location is the top consideration. Designate an “adult drawer” and perhaps latch it. Parents may need to lock a drawer or cabinet — “depends on how clever the kids are,” Forrest says, “and if they’re approaching teen age, locking is never a bad idea.” The ultimate in security, of course, is a safe. Justin discourages patients from using the same safe where they store personal documents, not only for the risk of scent leakage onto certificates and licenses but also because other people may access it. For many patients, a small gun safe will suffice; others may want a larger, refrigerated model. If all this seems too complicated, go with a tried-and-true method: old pill bottles in the medicine cabinet.