For each product I review, I have 3 criteria which I mark ‘good’, ‘neutral’ or ‘bad’. These criteria are ‘visuals’, ‘feel’ and ‘olfaction’.

Olfaction is probably the most important dimension I review on, it’s the most necessary of the three.

When I first started writing cannabis reviews, I would think of olfaction as including both taste and scent. Since, I’ve gravitated to thinking of scent separately to taste but still group them commonly under olfaction for the ranking.

I started to wonder, how does the group of products I found to have good olfaction differ from the others? So I wrote down some questions:

  • Price
    • Do I pay more for ‘Good’?
  • Content
    • Do ‘Good’ products have higher content?
    • What’s the % of ‘Good’ by chemotype?
  • Brands
    • Which brands are ‘Good’ most?
  • Packaging Date
    • Are ‘Good’ products newer?
  • Packaging
    • What package sizes are ‘Good’ most?
    • Do ‘Good’ products come in larger package sizes? (annotated)
  • Counts
    • What % of total reviews did I think were ‘Good’?
  • Rank
    • Do I rank ‘Good’ olfaction better?

On average, I’ve paid about 13% more for cannabis products I thought had the worst olfaction; ahh such is life.

When you sort the graph to show whole flower only, there’s really no difference in price between cannabis I thought was good, bad, or neutral. Which is more true to the cannabis consumer experience I’d relate to you. 


Cannabis that I observed as having ‘good’ olfaction had more cannabinoid content, on average. And this is true for both THC dominant and CBD dominant offerings. The differences are negligible however. I’d imagine there is something else supporting this trend if I were to dig into the granular data. For now, something to watch. 


On average, the brand I prefer most is no brand at all (unknown). 

The other winners have the most reviews and the highest ‘Good’ percentages. Broken Coast, Tantalus Labs, Wildlife Cannabis stand out to me.  


I’d relate to you I am willing to accept older cannabis that also has good olfaction. My idea of market preference at the time of writing; consumers want fresh product.

Turns out, my personal data set is supportive of what I think the market prefers. On average, the cannabis I think has ‘Good’ olfaction spent 40% less days in the package.


By my data, larger package sizes are more likely to have ‘Good’ olfaction. I cannot pull the selection bias out of this data. I buy all the cannabis myself, so I’m selective towards value. I tend to buy larger package sizes less often, and only when I have confidence in the product– thats why I feel like larger package sizes have better olfaction, not because they actually do.

Container type, there’s no trend I can observe here. You’d have have to match this against the seal type data to really dig into this area. I’d bet there’s more here.


Most of what I reviewed I thought had ‘Good’ olfaction. Either I’m lucky, or I’m way too generous with these reviews. Only 25% of total reviews I thought were bad… In my defence, I use a vaporizer that’s pretty favorable to drier cannabis. Had I been smoking all this cannabis I may have felt different about it.


On average, I rank ‘Good’ olfaction better.

The more interesting part of this graph, I think, is the long tails. For instance, the offerings I thought had ‘Good’ olfaction that are ranked near the back of the pack– what happened there?

And conversely, for the ones I thought were bad but they still broke above average. Something tells me these are the first few value offerings I reviewed. 


I don’t think there were any big surprises here, just that I pay more for cannabis I think has worse olfaction, and that I probably need to be more conservative in these reviews. 

This exercise yielded some places to look into further, like packaging type. Would be interesting to look at how packaging type and length correlates to the olfaction or feel dimensions.

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