Many retail shops in Colorado seeking recreational licenses are having trouble finding vendors for child-proof packaging. The state mandates that all marijuana products, including edibles, must be sold in an opaque package that is “significantly difficult for children under 5 years of age to open and not difficult for normal adults to use properly.”
Mike Elliott, director of the Medical Marijuana Industry Group, told the Denver Post that shop owners are worried they will not be able to comply with the rule by Jan. 1, which is when retail recreational stores can legally open for business.
The shortage of child-resistant bags could present an opportunity for packaging companies across the country, as Colorado laws do not require vendors to be local. New York-based Stink Sack, for instance, is already doing business in Colorado. That company’s owner, Ross Kirsch, said half a million of his opaque bags are in production and will be ready for delivery by Jan. 1. The bags are said to be smell-proof and have a double-locking mechanism.
Regulators have not yet finalized the penalties for breaking the packaging rules, but the state can fine first-time violators and then take additional actions if the infractions persist. Regulators did not sound sympathetic to the shortage of packaging.
“This is not a surprise that came and hit them over the heads,” said Julie Postlethwait, a spokesperson for the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division.