Opaque Packaging—when it’s needed and when it’s not.

Opaque Packaging—when it’s needed and when it’s not.

Rules around opaque packaging for cannabis vary from state to state. Some states require the use of opaque exit containers, others require the product container to be opaque itself. 


Don’t make the mistake of putting together your product to find that it isn’t in the right type of packaging.


In California, only certain types of marijuana products need to be in opaque packaging. All marijuana edibles need to be in opaque packaging.  The package can not be transparent in any way, and consumers can not see the product through the packaging.


There are two caveats:

  • Amber colored bottles are considered opaque
  • Beverages may use a single, vertical clear strip less than 0.25” wide to indicate serving sizes


While the rules seem clear cut, they do get a little confusing in what is considered an edible.  In the state of California, edibles are more than just those delicious gummies and cookies. Edibles are defined by the Manufactured Cannabis Safety Branch as cannabis products intended to be used orally in whole or in part (17 CA ADC §40100 (q)). This also includes products that dissolve or disintegrate in the mouth. 


Products that are not considered edibles by the MCSB are concentrates and tablets. Concentrates include tinctures, capsules, tablets and inhaled products (17 CA ADC §40100 (i)). Tablets are a single serving that is swallowed whole and is not chewable, dispersible, effervescent, orally disintegrating or consumed in any other way and does not include natural or artificial flavorings or sweetener (17 CA ADC §40100 (rr)).


And last but not least, flower, pre-rolls, inhaled products and topicals do not need to be in opaque packaging. 


If you’re not sure what type of packaging you should use, let the experts at Inkbrite help you design packaging that’s beautiful and compliant with California regulations.


This article is for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. For legal counsel, please contact your attorney. 

If you have comments or questions, please comment below. We love reader feedback.  

If you need beautifully designed, compliant packaging for your cannabis products, please contact solutions@inkbrite.com. Is your existing packaging compliant with California’s regulations? Inkbrite can tell you with a compliance review.

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