California Cannabis Packaging Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Legalization in several states, including California, opened a new opportunity for all types of cannabis products to dominate the market share. This increase in access to cannabis products sparked a push for packaging and labeling legal requirements, most of which will go into effect January 2020.

Beginning January 1, 2020, all cannabis and cannabis product packaging, beginning with the manufacturer, must be child resistant. Labeling may not be attractive to children, make health claims or use the word “organic” in violation of federal and state laws. The labeling requirements fall into two categories: primary panel requirements and informational panel requirements.

The following meets the requirements for child-resistant packaging:

  • Packages that have been certified as child-resistant, in accordance with the federal Poison Prevention Packaging Act (PPPA, 16 CFR §1700.1)
  • A bottle sealed with a pry-off metal crown bottle cap
  • Plastic packaging that is at least 4 mils. thick and heat-sealed without an easy-open tab, dimple, corner or flap

Key Points For Testing and Child Resistant Approval Certifications:

Kids: Consider that kids like to pick at things and chew on things. Using materials that can resist this action are needed to complete the testing phase with a PASS rate.

Seniors: Opening instructions need to be simple – they should be able to open the product in about a minute as they lose interest after that; which can result in failure because they wont complete the testing process.

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Check the marijuana packaging website for updates regarding cannabis packaging regulations in California. You can also download the cannabis packaging checklist here.