Cannabidiol (CBD) is an ingredient of cannabis that benefits health in many ways but doesn’t get you stoned. It turns out it has one more advantage: it’s a food preservative.
Fruit and vegetables don’t last long, so shoppers often have to peruse them to find the best items to purchase. Using Cannabidiol as a Potential Postharvest Treatment to Maintain Quality and Extend the Shelf Life of Strawberries was a study recently conducted by the University of South Florida’s Food Quality Laboratory that appeared in the journal Postharvest Biology and Technology. It showed that CBD was a food preservative: adding CBD oil to strawberries lengthened their shelf life, making them redder for longer, inhibiting mould and yeast growth and reducing microbial load.
Strawberries received a coating of CBD oil immediately after harvest. They were then put into storage at 1°C (34°F) for eight days and 10°C (50°F) for another 8 days. The CBD oil meant they kept for longer.
As the researchers put it: “Strawberries were evaluated for visual quality and microbial load before and during storage. Results from this study showed that CBD oil was effective at maintaining the visual appearance of strawberries … compared to the fruit that was not treated.”
Consumers often base their buying decisions on appearance, so it’s significant that CBD oil kept strawberries redder for longer.
An earlier study by the University of Queensland’s Centre for Superbug Solutions found that CBD killed all strains of bacteria, including some that are very resistant to conventional antibiotics. Bacteria didn’t become resistant to CBD even after 20 days, the length of time required for bacteria to become antibiotic resistant. Mark Blaskovich, the lead researcher, remarked that his team “still don’t know how it works.”