The legalization of cannabis in Canada and many US states has caused quite the buzz.
As people learn more about cannabis, its stigma has quickly declined, while its demand has seen a meteoric rise. The evolution of cannabis product packaging shows progress towards more sophisticated, convenient, and safer methods.
A lot of thought needs to be put into cannabis packaging. Since competition is now stiff, you should do all you can to ensure that your packaging gives you an advantage.
Here are the factors that you should consider when updating your cannabis packaging:
1. Available Cannabis Packaging Options
Cannabis products are packaged in various packaging formats, including plastic bags, tins, cartons, glass jars, and pouches. All of these have their own upsides and downsides. However, there has been incredible growth in the preference for flexible pouches and bags for various marijuana products, especially edibles and powders.
Flexible packaging is popular due to its affordability, lightweight, sustainability, and convenience. Mostly, cannabis products are packaged in three formats:
Stand-up pouches – also known as Doypacks – are beautiful modern bags with flat and oval bottoms. They provide lots of space for labeling and branding.
Since they’re common in the food industry, they reassure consumers that may have reservations about trying cannabis products. Their sophisticated feel makes them ideal for cannabis products with premium price points, such as edibles.
Stick packs are long and narrow bags that are mostly used to pack single-serve powder and liquid products. These bags have a long vertical seal and horizontal (top and bottom) seals.
These small and convenient bags are usually preferred in the cannabis industry for products like freeze pops and drink mixes.
The pillow bag is the smallest and most economical of all bags. It has a versatile layout, which makes it ideal for many industries.
It’s easy to produce them in large quantities, but they don’t exactly ooze luxury and sophistication.
2. Design and Target Market
Since Washington and Colorado became the first states to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, the consumer demographics have changed drastically. Young professionals, old people, and parents may be hesitant to try cannabis due to the stigma that has surrounded it for ages. Your packaging should put their mind at ease with an ambiance of a legal, safe, and reliable product.
Stand-up pouches’ feel of simple familiarity with a touch of sophistication makes them a favorite in the cannabis edible market. Your packaging design should exclude those who aren’t part of your target market, such as children. Therefore, you should avoid having cartoons and bright, attention-grabbing details.
You should aim for attractive, minimalistic, and sophisticated design.
3. Legal Requirements
There are legal guidelines that govern cannabis products and packaging. These rules touch on various things, such as:
- Design and branding
- Package label font size
- Packaging opacity and permeability
- Marketing implying certain health claims
- Tamper evident features
- Child-resistant closures
- Legal warnings that have to be on the package
Since cannabis regulations are very specific and ever-changing, you should always try to remain informed on the newest changes. Although manufacturers of packaging materials are often aware of the laws, it is up to you to ensure that the packaging meets the set laws and regulations.
4. Safety Factors
Although the law doesn’t demand child-resistant cannabis packaging, it is advisable to cover it anyway. The law might require this in the future, so you could save yourself the possibility of future redesigns by including it.
It also shows your consumers that you care about the risks of access to children.
5. Product Freshness and Potency Factors
Exposing cannabis products to the elements (mostly moisture) degrades them. Selling stale products is a sure way of losing your customers.
To ensure that your products remain fresh for long, you can turn to Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP). One of the most common methods in the cannabis industry is the nitrogen gas flush. In this method, (harmless) nitrogen is pumped inside the packages before they’re sealed shut. This gas displaces oxygen and keeps the product safe from oxidation.
6. Product Packaging Procedures
Do you plan on packaging your cannabis manually or using automating machinery?
If you want to go with manual or hand-filling, you should go with bags that have wide-mouth tops so that filling is easy. When you have high or increasing demand, this isn’t the most time and cost-efficient method.
Automated packaging machines make your bag style options unlimited. Modern cannabis packaging machines let you speed up production with high accuracy (within a tenth of a gram), even at high speed.
Winding Up: The Final Touches on Your Packaging
Your cannabis packaging should be at the forefront of your marketing strategies. When you have the container design right, the next thing you should think about is the information you want to print on the bags or container labels.
The information you have on your product packaging is crucial in your marketing efforts. When you have an idea of what your logo is to be like and the info you want on your packaging, just talk to a top label printing company. You can try printing your own labels, but such companies are your best shot at getting top results that set you apart from your competition.
It doesn’t get any more current than being in the cannabis industry. Therefore it’s only right that you get your packaging to reflect that contemporariness.