The Future of Sustainable Cannabis Packaging

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At Green Revolution, our company name is a promise.  We know damn well that we owe our growth and success to Mother Nature- not only for bringing us the cannabis plant, but for other resources that make it possible to produce the high quality products that our customers trust. One way we’ve committed to giving back to our great planet is by consciously designing our products and packaging. What things are made of, where they come from and where they end up when we’re done with them. 

Right now, the global cannabis packaging market is worth a staggering $12 billion and rapidly expanding at a 38% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). By 2025, the market is projected to surpass $20.4 billion.

As the cannabis packaging market grows and the industry as a whole remains in flux, there are two issues that continue to escalate in importance: sustainability and child resistance.

Sustainablity and child resistance present even greater challenges for those of us designing packaging in more than one state as there are such fragmented cannabis regulations and standards across the country.

But by embracing sustainability and childproofing as part of the design challenge and branding process, we can flip the challenges of cannabis packaging into opportunities to change the overall user experience while simultaneously promoting environmental and human safety.

Green Packaging

Sustainable packaging has increasingly been used to communicate brand identity by major players in the cannabis packaging supply chain.

Although there aren’t any National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) regulations currently in place for green packaging, responsible cannabis packagers are taking cimate-conscious initiatives to evolve the standards of practice.

Not only does green packaging reduce environmental pollution, but it’s also what more and more customers support nowadays. Making eco-friendly changes is also what future regulations and public policy will likely require. In fact, the sustainability component is becoming just as important as the design, color, and overall aesthetics of cannabis packaging.

In addition to eliminating excess packaging, eco-friendly alternatives to plastic are being discovered as we speak including biodegradable materials, reclaimed ocean plastic, glass, as well as compostable and recyclable wastes. R&D departments are also uncovering algae inks, mushroom trays and zucchini bags to sustainable package cannabis.

Child-Resistant Packaging

Since the beginning of the year, cannabis packaging has been required to adhere to broad Child Resistant Packaging parameters set forth by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission. Specific child proofing regulations, however, vary greatly across city, county, and state lines

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So when operating in multiple states, you have to determine the more stringent regulations to comply with while also accounting for the next wave of regulations that will need to be factored into your designs. You don’t want to oversimplify to try to get to market and then risk your designs becoming obsolete in a few months.

But then again, you also don’t want to over-design for potential changes, adding unnecessary cost and time. Striking a balance in your childproofing solutions to represent your brand identity and protect human safety is what will set your product apart from the competition while ensuring you’re always test-ready.

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How We’re Preparing for the Future

Green Revolution is taking a climate-first approach to packaging with the goal of remaining at the forefront of innovation.

We’ve moved to 100% plant-based hemp paper and significantly smaller packaging as part of our effort to design for a more sustainable future. We hope to positively impact the user experience in terms of how our products and packaging interact to comprehensively represent our brand.

While sustainability is a pivotal part of our branding, childproof design is a secondary aspect. We regularly check local regulations in the states we operate in to ensure we’re meeting compliance standards as part of our branding experience and packaging presentation.

And because childproofing regulations are evolving and may change sooner rather than later, we’ve integrated testing into our iterative process and continuously identify key metrics for successful childproof design.

Our in-house testing lab allows our designs to be quickly iterated upon to allow for optimal results.

The Road to The Green Revolution

One thing is certain – the next phase of cannabis packaging is just on the horizon. It’s vital to keep an agile and proactive mindset with a keen eye towards the future.

By doing so, we can together as an industry do what’s necessary to protect the environment and human safety while, at the same time, begin to transform the overall user experience.

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