Updated medical and recreational Marijuana guidelines just went into effect in Colorado. As of October 1, weed dispensaries can no longer sell edible pot products in any shape that resembles a person, animal or fruit.

Colorado’s new marijuana edible label requirements

The new marijuana rules, enacted by the state legislature, are meant to make it harder for children to mistake pot edibles as candy. According to Mike Hartman with the Colorado Department of Revenue, marijuana edibles must not have a shape or branding that could be “enticing to children.” However, edible cannabis products can still be fruit-flavored and have certain geometric shapes.

In addition, product labels are now required to have a clear statement about the potency of the weed inside. The new requirements will make it easier for a consumer to determine the “potency of the products they are buying,” Hartman added.

The potency disclosure on the marijuana edible product label must be printed in a font that is two sizes larger than the rest of the text. The weed statement must be written in bold lettering and surrounded by a brightly colored circle or square.

Weed industry response

While the new cannabis labeling rules may create some headaches for pot shops, some in the industry support the changes. Dispensary owner Scott Durrah says the new requirements will increase costs for manufacturers, but agrees that changes must be made to ensure children do not accidentally consume edible cannabis.

He made changes to his products long before the October 1 guidelines by putting the marijuana in childproof packages similar to prescription medication bottles.

A growing business

In Colorado, sales of both medical and recreational marijuana continue to grow at a pace of nearly 40 percent annually. Just in March 2017 alone, product sales exceeded $131 million and have been over $100 million for the previous 10 consecutive months.

Also in March, the state collected almost $23 million in tax revenue directly related to legal pot sales. Experts predict the cannabis industry will generate at least $1.6 billion in sales in Colorado by the end of the year.

The new Colorado edible marijuana requirements apply to both medical cannabis dispensaries as well as retail recreational shops. Any weed products on store shelves that arrived prior to October 1 are exempt and can be sold under previous labeling rules. Labeling for marijuana oil or dry products does not need to be updated.