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Michigan Marijuana Regulatory Agency calls for more childproof packaging


Cannabis-infused products sold in Michigan cannot have packaging that features cartoons or other images that would appeal to children. - COURTESY PHOTO
  • Courtesy photo
  • Cannabis-infused products sold in Michigan cannot have packaging that features cartoons or other images that would appeal to children.

Michigan's Marijuana Regulatory Agency announced a crackdown on the packaging of cannabis-infused edibles in an effort to prevent children from accidentally consuming them.

Under the agency's guidelines, which were reiterated in an advisory bulletin shared Monday, the packaging of cannabis-infused products sold in Michigan must not be appealing to children, and cannot include images of cartoons or fruit. They must also be clearly marked as containing THC.

The products also cannot imitate the packaging of commercially sold candy, and the words "candy" or "candies" cannot be used.

"The MRA is aware of many non-compliant marijuana-infused edible packaging and products available in the market today," the agency wrote in a statement. "Some of the marijuana packages that appeal to children have images of fruit, animals, or food on the packaging. Others use words that are commonly used in commercial candy such as milk chocolate, peanut butter, gummies, or chews without using the words THC, marijuana, or cannabis as modifiers."

According to the MRA, producers can use stickers clearly labeling the product as containing cannabis or covering the non-compliant parts of the packaging, or they can voluntarily destroy the products. Adult-use stores can send the products back to the processors using a secure transporter, but medical marijuana provisioning centers cannot.

"We need to remain vigilant in protecting children from accidentally ingesting marijuana products," MRA executive director Andrew Brisbo said in a statement. "When the products leave the stores, it is important that the packaging is not attractive to minors. Obviously, nothing we can do is as impactful as the watchful eyes of adults, but we want parents in Michigan to know that we are doing everything in our power to prevent children from unknowingly consuming marijuana products."

The restrictions do not apply to in-store displays.

The bulletin comes ahead of an announced crackdown scheduled to start Feb. 2, 2022, when the agency says it will start investigating offenders. It also follows reports of an increasing number of Michigan children accidentally consuming cannabis-infused edibles.

The agency also urges parents to keep cannabis products in a lockbox, which it says are available from many local health departments free of charge.

If a child accidentally consumed a cannabis-infused edible, the MRA urges parents to call the poison control hotline at 800-222-1222.

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