The golden state of California has the most progressive laws on cannabis in the United States. California’s laws on Marijuana labeling and packaging are some of the most comprehensive laws in comparison to other states.
Marijuana Packaging Facts
- The name used in the California is Cannabis.
- All labels must have the THC levels
- A label requires the Universal Symbol (approved by state of California) to be placed on all marijuana packaging
- Marijuana Packaging must be able to be resealed if user intends to use it more than once.
- All Edible packaging must be opaque.
- All cannabis packaging must be child resistant.
- Child-resistant packaging has to either of these ways: (i) through packaging each cannabis item individually or (ii) through exit bag packaging if selling the item at a retail location.
- Labeling must not be attractive to minors
- California has two labeling requirements which fit into two distinct categories: (i) primary panel: the part of the label that is most prominent to the customer (usually the part of the label that describes what the product is) and (ii) informational panel- the part of the label that does not form the primary panel of the label (usually the contents of the packaging and the ingredients- if applicable)
- For bottles containing marijuana or cannabis-based items, serving sizes may be labelled on a clear vertical strip that is less than 0.25” wide
- Products must be protected from contaminate substances.
- Information that is required on a label must be written in English
- Label should be easy to read.
Informational Panel for Manufactured Products must contain:
- Information contained in size 6 font or higher in relation to size of the primary panel and container
- The name of the licensed manufacturer / grower (either legal or registered name of business contained on license certificate)
- The date of the cannabis product’s packaging.
- The following statement in bold print must be printed: “GOVERNMENT WARNING: THIS PRODUCT CONTAINS CANNABIS, A SCHEDULE I CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE. KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN AND ANIMALS. CANNABIS PRODUCTS MAY ONLY BE POSSESSED OR CONSUMED BY PERSONS 21 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER UNLESS THE PERSON IS A QUALIFIED PATIENT. THE INTOXICATING EFFECTS OF CANNABIS PRODUCTS MAY BE DELAYED UP TO TWO HOURS. CANNABIS USE WHILE PREGNANT OR BREASTFEEDING MAY BE HARMFUL. CONSUMPTION OF CANNABIS PRODUCTS IMPAIRS YOUR ABILITY TO DRIVE AND OPERATE MACHINERY. PLEASE USE EXTREME CAUTION.”
- If sold for medical purposes the Marijuana packaging must state “for medical use only”
- A list of all product ingredients in descending order of predominance by weight or volume.
- The names of all artificial colorings contained in the product must be listed
- The product expiration date, “use by” date, “best by” date (if any)
- The UID and the bath or lot number
- If the cannabis product is perishable or is perishable after opening, the statement “keep refrigerated” or “refrigerate after opening”
- *** Except UID and batch lot number, all information contained in the information panel may be fulfilled with supplemental labeling (ie: package insert, fold-out or booklet label, hanging tag, etc).
Marijuana Packaging must accurately state contents of the product
Label must contain information on allergen cross-contact during manufacturing process
What is child-resistant packaging? (also known as “CRP”)
- CRP packaging must be certified in accordance with a federal statute known as the Poison Prevention Packaging Act (PPPA, 16 CFR 1700.1)
- For bottles, the lid must be a “pry-off” metal crown bottle cap (similar to older generation coca cola bottles or glass beer bottle caps)
- Plastic Packaging must be at least 4 mils. thick and sealed with heat. Packaging must not contain easy-open tabs, dimples, corners or flaps.
There are two types of CRP:
- Single-use CRP. Single-use CRP is also known as initial CRP. Initial CRP means that your product can be used multiple times, but once it is opened, the item packaging is ripped, torn, or easy to open (and it is intended to be used multiple times). On its first use, the package is child-resistant, but on subsequent usage, it is no longer considered child-resistant. If your item can be used multiple times, the packages label must state “this package is not child-resistant after opening”
- Lifetime CRP. Multiple-use CRP means that your package is child-resistant upon opening it for the first time and it remains child-resistant throughout its use. No matter how many times it is opened, it always remains child resistant.
Marketing to Children
Marketing or labeling that is marketed or geared towards children is prohibited
The package must contain a seal or something that shows that the package has not been opened prior to purchase
Cannabis Products in Liquid Form
- Must indicate what a single serving is
- Must be labelled “for medical use only”
- Packaging with Multiple Layers
If a product is placed in another container, box, sleeve, envelope or pouch (ie: its outer-most packaging), the outer packaging must contain: a universal symbol for inhaled products, an informational panel, and primary panel
Pre-Rolls and Packaged Marijuana Flowers
Pre-rolls and packaged marijuana flowers must include a primary panel with the following information in a size type font that is larger than size 6 point font, and must also contain:
- The identity of the product
- The net weight of the cannabis in the package (listed in metric units AND U.S. customary units)
- Universal symbol
- Informational label with information written in font size greater than size 6.
- The UID
- The licensed cultivator or licensee packaging the product (this information is either the legal corporate name or registered name by which the business will operate- that is listed on the license certificate) and its contact number or website address
- The date of packaging for retail sale
- The following statement written in bold font: “GOVERNMENT WARNING: THIS PACKAGE CONTAINS CANNABIS, A SCHEDULE I CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE. KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN AND ANIMALS. CANNABIS MAY ONLY BE POSSESSED OR CONSUMED BY PERSONS 21 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER UNLESS THE PERSON IS A QUALIFIED PATIENT. CANNABIS USE WHILE PREGNANT OR BREASTFEEDING MAY BE HARMFUL. CONSUMPTION OF CANNABIS IMPAIRS YOUR ABILITY TO DRIVE AND OPERATE MACHINERY. PLEASE USE EXTREME CAUTION.”
- Cannabinoid content must be stated
Restrictions on Labeling:
- Label cannot contain the name of a California county, unless 100% of the cannabis contained in the product was grown in that county
- Content contain likeness to characters, images or persons that are used to advertise to children
- No cartoons
- No imitation to candy packaging or labeling
- No use of the term “candy” or “candies” or variant of the spelling of candy such as “kandy” or “kandeez”
- Marijuana Packaging must not make health claims that are unsubstantiated (unless supported by publicly available scientific evidence including evidence from well-designed studies conducted in a manner that is consistent with generally recognized principles of science) for which there is wide agreement in the scientific community among experts – note that this is a very difficult burden to meet.
- No pictures of the actual product if it is edible
The Universal symbol shall be placed on all labels. The symbol must be black in color.