Standard Last Updated: May 17, 2018
After accounting for the input of the public and various experts, the NACB’s members voted to adopt the NACB Packaging and Labeling Standards on May 17, 2018.
Notes, Standard 2.02: These Standards do not prohibit Cannabis Retailers from displaying products that are not for sale in packaging that is not opaque or child-resistant (i.e., display products). However, under these Standards, the sale of such display products is prohibited unless such display products are packaged in a manner that meets the requirements of this Article prior to sale.
A Cannabis Retailer shall ensure that Cannabis Flower and Trim are placed in a Container prior to sale or transfer to a consumer. The Container may be, but is not required to be, Child-Resistant.
If the Cannabis Flower or Trim Container is not Child-Resistant, the Cannabis Retailer shall place the Container in a Child-Resistant exit package at the point of sale to a consumer.
Notes, Standard 2.04: Unlike for other products, the new Colorado regulations (effective 1/1/18) do not require cannabis flower or trim to be packaged in a Child- Resistant Container prior to being placed in a Child-Resistant exit package. Rather, flower and trim may be given to the consumer in a Child-Resistant exit package.
A Cannabis Establishment shall ensure that Cannabis Concentrates and Cannabis Products are placed in a Child-Resistant Container prior to sale or transfer to a consumer or another Cannabis Establishment.
A Cannabis Retailer may, but is not required to, place a Container in an exit package at the point of sale to a consumer. Except as required by Standard 2.04(b), the exit package is not required to be opaque or Child-Resistant.
An exit package may not contain any statements, claims, or appeals to minors that are prohibited by this Article.
The exit package is not required to contain any warnings, statements, symbols, or other information required by this Article.
Notes, Standard 2.08: The “Container” is the package directly containing the Cannabis or Cannabis Product and is sufficient packaging for sale at retail. Some states have accommodated Cannabis Establishments that wish to include additional external packaging. Called the “marketing layer” in Colorado, the outermost packaging layer will face the consumer at retail and upon sale, so it’s reasonable to require it to convey the same information as is required on Containers. Having a marketing layer does not, however, relieve the Container itself of any labeling obligations, since a consumer is likely to discard a marketing layer soon after purchase.
Notes, Standard 2.09: Subsection (a) relates to batch numbers, whereas Subsection (b) addresses license numbers. In the latter, the license numbers of the Cultivator(s) and, as applicable, Processor(s) are required on labels, but not the license number of the Retailer. There are circumstances in which the Retailer’s license number would be useful, however, so that question will be revisited when a Standard regarding recall procedures is drafted. Note also that Standard 2.22 requires the Retailer to provide its contact information on the label, perhaps obviating the need for a license number.
Notes, Standard 2.11: These warning statements are required by most or all states. The statements in Subsection (a) are required to be on the principal display panel because they are deemed especially important. To accommodate state variances in phrasing, exact language is not prescribed.
A Cannabis or Cannabis Product Container or label may not contain any false or misleading statements.
A Cannabis or Cannabis Product Container or label may not be designed to specifically target individuals under 21 years of age, such as by including:
Each Cannabis Concentrate or Cannabis Product shall include on a label all ingredients in the Cannabis Concentrate or Cannabis Product, listed by common or usual name in descending order of predominance by weight.
The Container or label for an Edible Cannabis Product that contains milk, eggs, fish, Crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, or soybeans must state that the product “contains” such food allergen(s) and name the food source from which each allergen is derived.
If regulations promulgated by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration classify new allergens as “major food allergens,” the requirements of this Standard shall be updated to require that the Container or label for an Edible Cannabis Product state that the product “contains” such food allergen(s) and name the food source from which each allergen is derived.
Notes, Standard 2.15: This Standard is similar to the FDA’s guidance on the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004, which defines as “major allergens” the allergens listed in Subsection (a) because they account for approximately 90% of all food allergies.
Notes, Standards 2.16 and 2.17: These Standards closely track the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s definitions of “disease claims” and “health claims,” which cannot be made without FDA approval. The FDA has not approved cannabis, so “disease claims” and “health claims” cannot be made about cannabis.
These Standards do, however, leave room for certain claims regarding the effects of cannabis. These claims, which are somewhat analogous to what the FDA calls “structure/function claims,” must be substantiated and accompanied by a disclaimer that the effects of cannabis vary by person.
[RESERVED PENDING ADOPTION OF NACB LABORATORY TESTING STANDARDS]
The statements and information required by this Article must be written or printed clearly and in English. In addition to English, a label may include an accurate translation of the required statements and information in another language.
Label text must be unobstructed and conspicuous. A Cannabis Establishment may affix multiple labels to a Container, provided that none of the statements or information required by this Article is obstructed.
The statements and information required by this Article must be written or printed in fonts and text sizes that are clear and legible to consumers.
Each Cannabis or Cannabis Product Container or label shall state the name of the licensee that produced the product and the licensee’s phone number.
A Cannabis Establishment shall ensure that Cannabis and Cannabis Products are packaged only in Containers that:
Notes, Standard 2.25: Note that NACB members may determine serving sizes at their discretion, so long as compliance with state law is maintained.