Do spices go bad and what is the best way to store them?
Spices, like all foods, have a distinct shelf life and will go bad. The length of that shelf life depends on how the spices are cared for.
Heat, humidity, air, and sunlight all have detrimental effects: they break down the chemical compounds (also known as essential oils) that give spices their flavors and aromas. When these chemical compounds break down the flavors lose potency. In some spices, flavors, and aromas can become rancid, moldy, musty, or dirty at which point the spices should be thrown away.