The absurdity and the hypocrisy around the packaging laws for cannabis in Canada

In Cannabis, Products by Weed Mama1 Comment

Imagine that’s how your bottle of wine looked, like it’s rubbing alcohol and should be kept in a medicine cabinet or under the sink with the other toxic substances, plastered with warning labels. Isn’t that atrocious? (The warning label you see in the picture is one used on cannabis packaging with the word cannabis switched to alcohol). That’s what they’ve done to cannabis with the highly restrictive laws around packaging.  In the above image is a real bottle of women’s intimacy spray that you can buy on the legal market. Those of us who’ve been cannabis consumers for a long time can cringe at the ugly packaging but will probably still buy it. However new consumers aren’t going to spend $75 on a bottle of what looks WD40 for their lady parts.

The hypocrisy

Cannabis isn’t fatal at any dose, alcohol however can be fatal if you ingest too much, it can also be fatal from heavy, long term use. As far as we know, long term heavy cannabis use isn’t fatal. So why are there no warning labels and packaging restrictions on bottles of alcohol?

An overdose of alcohol can cause alcohol poisoning, minors are especially at high risk for alcohol poisoning from binge drinking. This can result in hospitalization to have their stomach pumped, binge drinking can also be fatal. If you ingest too much cannabis you can have an intense experience and feel sick however your life won’t be in danger. Cannabis and alcohol have completely different side effects making it difficult to compare them however overall, according to current science, cannabis is safer than alcohol.

So again I ask, why are there no warning labels or packaging restrictions on alcohol?

The hypocrisy breakdown

These are the laws for cannabis flowers (Note: cannabis flowers are non-psychoactive until heated)

Cannabis: Packaging must be opaque

Alcohol: No such restriction

Cannabis: Product labels and product names can’t appeal to minors, no celebrity endorsements. For example the strain Girl Scout Cookies is now G.S.C in Canada. Snoop Dog’s line of cannabis products called Leafs By Snoop are labelled as “LBS” (pictured)

Alcohol: No such restriction- like this vodka cooler called Jaw Drop Squirting Oranges  or Wayne Gretsky’s Red Cask Whisky

Cannabis: Must have warning labels

Alcohol: No warning labels

The packaging laws and restrictions for cannabis are hurting the industry in so many ways. For one it’s made to look toxic, it’s meant to look that way to be unappealing to minors, but it’s so bad it’s unappealing to anyone. This makes it hard for companies to promote their products, especially  products designed for women.

Secondly, we can’t see the cannabis when we buy it, so we don’t know if it’s fresh. I recently bought a bottle of Blue Dream by Aurora and the product inside was powdery garbage. Would you buy a box of fruit or vegetables without looking inside, to make sure it’s not spoiled? It’s important for consumers to be able to check the cannabis before they buy it but that’s not allowed to under the law. It’s hard for me to talk about terpenes, how to enjoy them and so on if the products available to buy on the legal market are so old, they smell and taste stale.

Want to see this hypocrisy in action? You have to enter in your date of birth to verify your age before entering the BC cannabis store online, however you don’t have to verify your age for the BC liquor store, how is this allowed?

Some warning labels are needed for cannabis

There’s a distinct difference between cannabis products and alcohol. Alcohol is a drink and you can taste it when it’s in something. Cannabis however can be infused in a chocolate bar without any taste difference, this makes it easy for mistakes to happen. There does need to be a label that makes it clear there’s THC in the product.

Infused lubricants don’t have as much THC in it as other products meant to be ingested, it’s unlikely you’d feel anything if you get it in your mouth. However the bottles do need to clearly state there’s THC in it, in case someone wants to avoid ingesting THC through oral sex.

Then there’s the debate about infused edibles that look appealing to children, like gummy bears. The laws in Canada aren’t allowing it, and I can agree here, it’s easy for a child to eat a bag of THC infused gummies as it doesn’t taste different. Yes, it’s the responsibility of the parent to make sure they keep it out of their child’s reach however mistakes can happen, especially because we all know that not all parents will be responsible. However Canada has a way of overdoing it, making the laws so highly restrictive that it hurts the consumer. When edibles are legal, there’s going to be a 10mg per package limit. If you’re someone who needs 80mg of THC to feel anything, you’ll have to eat 8 packages of edibles to get your dose.

I can’t even imagine how horrible the packaging will be for edibles.

It’s time for Canadian lawmakers to get over the reefer madness

I know cannabis was just made legal and the old stigma will take time to fade away. However Canada decided to legalize cannabis and instead of making reasonable laws that make sense for cannabis, they chose to make hysterical laws that restrict the cannabis market from growing and thriving . There’s so much revenue potential that’s being lost, so many potential jobs that can be created but the whole industry is being held back by this. Canada made laws that will keep the black market (or the “silver” market as it’s known in the community), alive and well.


  1. I 100% agree with you that it looks like a toxic substance. The pacakaging has turned off my 70 year old mother as she says it looks like a “bad chemical and toxic” similar to how you described it.
    It is far to overboard this packaging.

    Great read. Many other great points I agreed with both as a mother and consumer.

    Thank you!

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