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The CULTA Blog

Trim, Shake, and Pre-Ground Flower: What’s the Difference?

pre-ground flower product laying on table

As the cannabis market continues to evolve, so does the terminology used to refer to an ever-expanding array of products. There’s shatter, glass, diamonds, and sauce. Then there’s wax, rosin, and resin. And don’t forget about tinctures, oils, and edibles. Are you confused yet? We don’t blame you! In this blog, we’ll go back to basics and explain the differences between trim, shake, and pre-ground flower, all of which are derived directly from cannabis flower. 

What is trim? 

Trim refers to the “undesirable” parts of the cannabis plant that are trimmed away during cultivation and processing. Trim is often made up of sugar leaves, stems, and other plant material and typically contains lower levels of cannabinoids and terpenes. Since trim has fewer cannabinoids, it is usually sold at a lower price point than shake or pre-ground flower. This means there are several situations where it simply makes more sense to use trim, including: 

  • Making cannabutter- Since the standard ratio of butter to cannabis is 1 oz of cannabis for every 1 pound of butter, and you’ll need to use finely ground cannabis, using trim to make cannabutter will help save you time and money. 
  • Adding to tea- If you’d like to enhance your favorite tea, simply steep the trim in hot water with some fat (like MCT oil) to help extract the cannabinoids and terpenes, and then add your favorite tea bag or leaves. 
  • DIY topicals or concentrates- If you’re attempting to make your own topicals or concentrates, we recommend using trim. There will be a lot of trial and error, so start with trim to avoid wasting too much money on experimentation.

ADVANTAGES: low-cost; avoids waste; ideal for edibles and DIY topicals/concentrates

DISADVANTAGES: fewer cannabinoids and terpenes

What is shake? 

Shake is cannabis flower that naturally “falls off” during handling and processing. If you’ve ever purchased a jar of large flower nugs, used it to pack bowls or roll your own joints, and noticed an accumulation of particulates at the bottom of your jar, this is shake. While you might have a joint’s worth of shake once you’ve used up your jar, just imagine how much growers and processors are producing every day. 

Many assume that shake is lower quality or less potent, but this is simply not true. It’s the same exact quality as whole flower, just in a different form. To avoid waste, some cultivators will gather the shake and sell it for a discount, but in many cases, cultivators will use shake for pre-rolls or edibles in lieu of packaging and selling it to their customers. 

ADVANTAGES: same potency as whole flower; often offered at a discount

DISADVANTAGES: can be made up of different strains; may contain seeds and stems 

What is pre-ground flower? 

Pre-ground flower is exactly what it sounds like. Flower that cannabis cultivators and processors have already ground up for their customers. Contrary to popular belief, pre-ground flower is not shake or trim; it’s whole flower nugs that have been ground up and packaged. Some dispensaries label pre-ground flower as shake, and vice versa, so you may want to check with the budtender about what exactly is in that little jar. 

The primary benefit of pre-ground flower is that it eliminates the need for grgrinding. This can be especially beneficial to medical patients who may have difficulty grinding due to joint pain or other symptoms, or for new users who don’t want to invest in expensive or difficult-to-use equipment. If you primarily consume cannabis via joints or vapes, you can skip the grinding and buy pre-ground flower directly from a dispensary. 

ADVANTAGES: convenient for vapes and joints; requires less equipment 

DISADVANTAGES: can lose potency faster than intact buds; may not be ground to your preferred consistency 

Purchase pre-ground flower at CULTA 

If you’re interested in purchasing pre-ground flower, you’re in luck. With grass, we’re proud to bring our customers the same high-quality flower they’re accustomed to in an easy-to-use pre-ground form. Whether you’re looking for something a little more convenient, don’t want to invest time or effort into grinding flower yourself, or are looking for a more cost-effective burn, the benefits of pre-ground flower are many. 

Head into our dispensaries for more information about our grass products. CULTA BaltimoreCULTA/Greenhouse Wellness, and CULTA/Kannavis. grass