Article by David Brown, Lift
When the task force put forward their recommendations for packaging for legal cannabis, they highlighted several public health concerns they sought to have addressed by the future regulations.
Many of these regulations are informed by and similar to existing regulations limiting how tobacco is packaged and marketed in Canada. Among them are restrictions on promotion and advertising, plain packaging that only lists the company name, strain name, price, amounts of THC and CBD, as well as warnings and other labelling requirements, and requiring opaque, resealable, child-proof packaging.
While those selling or seeking to sell cannabis have objected to these types of regulations, similar to the concerns of tobacco companies as the senate considers changes to the Tobacco Act to, among other things, introduce plain packaging rules.
Some argue that plain packaging will only benefit the larger producers, an end result in conflict with another task force goal of not creating a market controlled by a handful of large companies. A marketing professor at Simon Fraser University told CBC that more strict regulations on packaging could actually help smaller, craft growers compete with established, large-scale growers.
Gary Jackson, President of CannaPack Solutions in Vancouver, BC, says he expects plain packaging very similar to what many licensed producers currently use. The biggest difference, he says, is size of containers. Whereas medical patients often need to order large amounts at a time, perhaps a month’s worth of cannabis at a time, recreational consumers will want smaller amounts.
CannaPack Solutions provides packaging for several licensed producers in Canada and has contracts with clients abroad.