“Not For Kids” Warning Label: What It Means For Your Cannabis Business

By Jason Lammers

Effective Feb 14th, 2017 the new Not for Kids warning symbol will be required on all cannabis edibles. Here’s what it means for your cannabis business.

  • The LCB is defining marijuana edibles as “marijuana infused products meant to be eaten or swallowed”
  • Warning symbol must be a minimum size of ¾” tall x ½” wide
  • Warning symbol can not be changed in any way except for sizing purposes (as long as the minimum sizes mentioned above are met)
  • Warning symbol can be incorporated into your branded packaging or be applied as a label onto your existing packaging.
  • Warning symbol must be on the front of your cannabis packaging.
  • Warning symbol cannot cover or obscure any other information required to be on the package.
  • Warning symbol must have a black border around the edges when the label or packaging is also white to ensure good visibility

The new warning symbol requirements came about, due to concerns from the Washington Poison Center, because of an increase in calls from kids eating marijuana edibles. The 800 number on the new warning symbol is an emergency helpline, that is a free and confidential resource.

The warning symbol requirement is a great example of how both the public and private sectors worked together to craft sensible legislation to address this issue. Once it was determined that a warning symbol was needed to keep kids away from Marijuana edibles, original drafts were going to require a Mr Yuk sticker be applied to all Cannabis edibles. Clearly, anyone in the edibles industry didn’t want a Mr Yuk sticker on their edibles packaging as that would only create more confusion to the consumer. Thanks to a variety of cannabis industry leaders & organizations providing feedback to the Liquor and Cannabis Board, they listened, and developed a new more sensible warning symbol that would both be an effective warning symbol and not confuse cannabis consumers.

If you work in the cannabis industry this should be an important lesson to us all to get involved and help steer sensible cannabis legislation in the right direction. This is our industry, and the LCB does listen, so it’s on us to make sure our voice is heard. There are a bunch of great cannabis groups you can join to make sure you’re involved. Here’s a few of my favorites.

Cannabis Alliance – http://www.thecannabisalliance.us/

NORML – http://norml.org/wa/item/washington-norml

NCIA – http://thecannabisindustry.org/join-now/

MJBA – http://mjba.net/

 

For more questions on the Not for Kids Warning Symbol and/or general packaging questions you can hear me talk at Canncon on the packaging panel on Feb 18th and come see me at our booth at Cannacon Feb 16-18th, booth #141.

To Purchase Not For Kids Warning Labels you can contact me via email or go to www.420Wholesalepack.com/cannabis-labels

Deadline Approaches for “Not For Kids” Cannabis Labelling in WA

WASHINGTON:  The Washington Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) has issued a reminder that the “Not for Kids” warning symbol will be required to be placed on all packages of marijuana products meant to be eaten or swallowed effective February 14, 2017.

The Board recognizes that changing packaging requires time which is why the effective date has been pushed out to mid-February, enforcement of the new requirement will commence at the same time. For your convenience the basic requirements are listed below as well as links to the rules and additional information.

The warning symbol cannot be any smaller than three-fourths inch in height by one-half inch in width. It must be of a size so as to be legible, readily visible by the consumer, and effective to alert consumers and children that the product is not for kids.

The warning symbol must be placed on the “principal display panel” or front of the package.

  • Principal display panel” is defined as  the portion(s) of the surface of the immediate container, or of any outer container or wrapping, which bear(s) the labeling designed to be most prominently displayed, shown, presented, or examined under conditions of retail sale.
  • “Immediate container” means the external container holding the marijuana product.

The symbol can be placed on the package/label in 3 ways:

  • The digital image can be incorporated onto labels for marijuana edible products;
  • The digital image may be downloaded and used to print stickers for placement on the front of marijuana edible products; or
  • Licensees may choose to purchase stickers of the “Not for Kids” warning symbol for placement on the front of marijuana edible products.

The symbol or stickers cannot cover or obscure any other information required to be on packages or labels for marijuana products.

The symbol is trademarked and cannot be changed in any way other than for sizing purposes, except that a licensee must use a black border around the edges of the white background of the warning symbol image when the label or packaging is also white to ensure visibility of the warning symbol.

A digital image of the warning symbol can be found at the Washington Poison Center’s website and additional information is available on the WSLCB website. You can view the rules as adopted by the Board on the WSLCB’s Recently Adopted Rules webpage.

After the rules are effective on February 14, 2017, they will be available on the Legislature’s website in the marijuana rules chapter 314-55 WAC: http://app.leg.wa.gov/WAC/default.aspx?cite=314-55. The Legislature’s website contains the most current information and versions of all laws and rules in the state.

Washington Poison Center Unveils Warning Symbol For Products “Not For Kids”

WASHINGTON: The Washington Poison Center (WAPC) today unveiled its chosen warning symbol for identifying products that are not for children at a Liquor and Cannabis Board meeting. The Washington Poison Center (WAPC) developed the warning symbol as a deterrent for children who may access adult-only products, such as edible marijuana products, purchased by adults in their home.

“For over 60 years the Washington Poison Center has been a vital community resource providing free medical help and tools for parents to protect their families,” said Carrie Ulvestad, WAPC’s executive director. “We are excited to present the new Not for Kids warning label which was created with input from cannabis industry leaders and prevention professionals across the state.”

“The number of calls to the Washington Poison Center related to marijuana exposures reached a single-year high in 2015 with 272 calls,” said WAPC’s clinical managing director, Dr. Alexander Garrard. “With more than 150 calls already this year, it is our hope that the Not for Kids label and our increased education efforts will equip parents and caregivers with the tools to have a conversation with their loved ones ages 1 to 21. Most importantly the label includes our 1-800-222-1222 emergency helpline number, a free, confidential resource for all ages.”

The Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (Board) will include the warning symbol on all edible products in its draft rules. The Board is expected to file draft rules Aug. 10, 2016.

“This is a perfect example of the public and private sector working together toward a common goal of public safety,” said WSLCB Chair Jane Rushford. “While this is the Poison Center’s warning symbol, they have collaborated with the agency and solicited our input throughout the process. We think their design is excellent and their process impressive. Should the symbol become part of our permanent rules, this will be another important tool in preventing child access to marijuana.”

No More Mr. Yuk

No More Mr. Yuk

Earlier this year, the WSLCB included a provision in draft marijuana rules that required the Mr. Yuk® symbol to be affixed to all edible marijuana products. The requirement was based on input at public hearings that a warning symbol was necessary to deter child access to marijuana edibles. The Board later dropped the requirement of using Mr. Yuk® while the Washington Poison Center developed its own symbol. With the new symbol finalized, the Board will move forward with the rule-making process which includes soliciting public comment.

Should the rules follow an expected timeline, the symbol will be required on the rules effective January 17, 2017. The Board would allow 90 days after adoption to give the industry time to comply.