On your last dispensary visit, you may have noticed differences in cultivar pricing – why are some less or more expensive per ounce? That’s because you can choose from different tiers from flower, from smaller, lower-quality buds to the best of the best, often marketed as premium flower or top-shelf flower.

For cannabis lovers, there’s nothing that compares to premium flower. Here’s what makes top-shelf flower so special, and why it’s worth the investment.

What is premium cannabis flower?

Premium cannabis flower is top-shelf quality cannabis that has densely packed trichomes filled with rich cannabinoids and terpenes. Premium flower often boasts vibrant colors and is trimmed to perfection. It is generally more potent and flavorful, has a longer shelf life than traditional cannabis flower, and may be preferred by experienced consumers or medical patients looking for specific results. 

What makes premium cannabis flower special?

Purchasing premium flower means getting the best the dispensary has to offer. But what makes premium cannabis so special? Let’s take a closer look.


Cannabinoid potency refers to the amount of cannabinoids present in the bud. Cannabinoids contribute to the overall consumption experience, and knowing the cannabinoid profile can help consumers predict the effects of specific products or cultivars. Cannabinoids are concentrated in the trichomes, or resin glands, of the flower, which are visible to the naked eye. Premium cannabis flower usually has a lot of well-preserved trichomes, giving it a frosty look that signals high potency. 

Terpene profile 

Terpenes are responsible for the aroma, flavor, and certain therapeutic effects of cannabis. They are also among the most difficult compounds to preserve after harvest, as terpenes begin to degrade quickly under even mild conditions. Premium cannabis flower cultivators follow rigorous procedures to preserve these volatile compounds, offering rich terpene profiles and enhancing the scent, taste, and effects of their products.

Shelf life

Not all cannabis flower has the same lifespan, and all cannabis flower degrades over time.  While an individual cannabis product’s shelf life depends on how well it was harvested, dried, cured, and stored, most products offered at dispensaries list a “use by” date to signal when the flower is past its prime.

Lower-grade flower is often dried and cured incorrectly or left susceptible to environmental conditions like heat, light, oxygen, and moisture. Premium cannabis products harvested and stored correctly have a shelf-life from six months to one year before showing signs of degradation. 

Cryo Cure’s patent-pending technology directly addresses the factors that impact shelf life. By cutting the dry time from a few weeks to as little as 13 hours, Cryo Cured cannabis can have a shelf life of up to two years when stored properly in an airtight container away from light.

Four ways to identify premium cannabis flower

Whether you’re a new or experienced cannabis consumer, you may be wondering how to spot the highest-quality premium cannabis flower. While speaking to a budtender is a great way to find the right option, you can look for the following to determine the quality of a bud for yourself:

1. Appearance

Color is one of the easiest ways to distinguish premium cannabis from standard products. While lower-quality cannabis may appear brown or yellowed, premium cannabis flower will display an array of vibrant tones, from deep greens to purples. In addition to a beautiful, rich color, premium cannabis flower should appear perfectly trimmed and manicured with a frosty coating of trichomes. The buds will be larger than lower-quality options and appear much more light and fluffy. 

2. Aroma

Terpenes play a massive role in the aroma of cannabis buds as well. Generally, the more terpenes in a bud, the more intense it will smell. Because premium cannabis flower is harvested and cured with terpene preservation in mind, you can expect fresh, robust scents. Lower-quality options may have little to no scent, or worse, a musty smell that could signal contamination by mold or mildew.

3. Consistency

Premium cannabis flower should be neither too dry nor too wet. While dry and crumbly buds often indicate poor quality, premium cannabis flower will feel somewhat sticky and spongy.  Still, premium cannabis buds should be dry enough to hear the “snap sounds” when broken apart by hand. Overly moist flower will not burn as evenly and could be susceptible to contamination by mold and mildew.

4. Experience

Premium cannabis flower offers a superior consumption experience to lower quality options. Generally, premium buds provide carefully-tailored, complex cannabinoid profiles that supply a range of experiences. While lower quality options are less predictable and may leave you feeling differently than intended, premium cannabis flower offers predictable effects to suit whatever your preference may be. Those looking for products with the most therapeutic potential may succeed with the broad range of effects offered by premium cannabis flower. 

Cultivating a premium experience with Cryo Cure 

Cryo Cure is proud to offer premium cannabis flower that is consistently high in quality and can meet all your needs. Our patented process allows growers and manufacturers to avoid human error and harvest cannabis with that “fresh from the farm” feeling by eliminating the typically weeks-long process of drying and curing. Schedule a consultation today to learn more about how CryoCure can help bring your business to the next level with vibrant, aromatic, premium cannabis flower that stands the test of time.