The sixth-month transition period California’s Bureau Cannabis Control allowed after adult-use sales became legal on January 1 is winding down. Come July 1st, there will be no more exceptions to any of the state’s regulations. And any cannabis good that fail to meet the entire run of statutory and regulatory rules will have to be destroyed—also according to the rules. If you’re a cannabis consumer or business operator, here’s everything you need to know about California’s new cannabis business requirements.
California’s New Cannabis Business Requirements Are About To Get Much Stricter
California’s new cannabis business requirements address a number of specific categories pertaining to lab testing, packaging and labeling and THC limits. All of these requirements will take effect on July 1, 2018. Here’s a breakdown of each category.
Fears over uptakes in hospitalizations due to cannabis “overdoses” have put pressure on manufacturers to limit the quantity of THC in individually packaged cannabis products. July’s new rules specify limits on both edible and non-edible products.
Edible products will have limits for packages and individual servings. Individual serving sizes cannot exceed 10 milligrams of THC. Packages, on the other hand, cannot exceed 100 milligrams total. For those doing the math, that’s a max of 10 servings per package.
Non-edible cannabis products, like concentrates, extracts, topicals and certain oils, have different limits for medical and adult-use buyers.
If you’re a medical user, your limits are higher. Non-edible cannabis products can contain up to 2,000 milligrams of THC per package.
Adult-use buyers can purchase non-edible cannabis products up to 1,000 milligrams of THC per package. If a product
Furthermore, products above 1 milligram THC, the adult-use limit, are only permitted in the medicinal market.
Packaging and Labeling Requirements
Packaging requirements have been a point of contention for as long as cannabis has been legal. Concerns that children would be unable to identify a cannabis product from the packaging, or worse, attracted to the product’s branding, are commonplace among regulators.
Additionally, California has so far allowed retailers to add their own labeling or packaging to products they receive from manufacturers. But the new requirements going into effect July 1 will put sharper restrictions on what retailers can do with their goods.
Starting July 1, cannabis products must be packaged and properly labeled before being transported to a retailer. Furthermore, a retailer is prohibited from even accepting cannabis products without proper labeling.
But the rules go one step further. If a retailer receives unlabelled products, they can’t label them themselves. And that’s true even if a retailer has unlabelled inventory prior to July 1. Retailers also don’t have any options for third-party labeling by another licensed retailer.
Retailers will also have to put a “FOR MEDICAL USE ONLY” sticker on any products for the medical market without such labels.
Any inventory or products that don’t have the correct labeling by July 1 must be destroyed.
But California eased up requirements for retailers in one area, somewhat. It’s no longer a retailers’ responsibility to ensure products are in child-resistant packaging. Manufacturers have to take care of that prior to transport. Finally, retailers’ own exit packaging does not have to be child-resistant.
Lab Testing Requirements
Lab testing has always been a tricky part of regulated cannabis programs. But testing is crucial for medical patients especially. Not to mention ensuring products are high quality, consistent, and safe.
California’s new lab testing requirements are probably the strictest of all the changes. Retailers will have to destroy cannabis products that fail to meet the new testing requirements by July 1.
A retailer cannot sell any untested products or send them to a distributor for testing. And if you’re a distributor that another distributor owns, any untested cannabis goods made or harvested before January 1, 2018, will have to go.
If you’re a distributor owned by manufacturer or cultivator, however, you can send your untested products back for testing.
Everything You Need To Know About California’s New Cannabis Business Requirements
All of the above are new rules and regulations that all cannabis businesses in California must follow by July 1, 2018. Retailers have had six months to prepare for the full implementation of these regulations. Hopefully, they’re ready.