This week marks a major milestone for the NACB and the cannabis industry-at-large: the release of a DRAFT of the NACB’s first-ever National Standard, addressing packaging and labeling rules. It is available here for review as we commence a Notice and Comment period that will conclude on February 21st. Until that time, anyone can provide feedback, which NACB Members will consider before voting on a final standard shortly after that date.
Why Are National Standards Important?
AG Sessions has been vocal the past year in suggesting he doesn’t believe most states’ cannabis laws are sufficient to protect the public. The rescinding of the Cole Memo in early January was a clear shot across the bow. The NACB believes that self-regulation is the most effective course of action for NACB Members - the most ethical and responsible cannabis businesses - in the face of regulators' growing need to intervene. Creating National Standards that in some cases are more rigorous than state law will help NACB Members control their own destiny; it is a meaningful way to protect consumers and demonstrate to regulators, financial institutions and the public that NACB Members operate at the highest levels of ethics and responsibility.
Why is focusing on packaging and labeling the first NACB National Standard? NACB Members have developed a deliberative and inclusive process with regard to standards development. In fact, it replicates the federal government’s procedures. We take input from government, NACB Members, and subject matter experts into careful consideration in initially drafting standards. Packaging and labeling was identified as the first standard to address through this process because it impacts so many issues related to public health and safety.
Here’s what NACB Member Pete Kadens, Co-founder and CEO of Green Thumb Industries (GTI), said about the standard:
"Consumer education and awareness regarding the effects of cannabis products is a key concern for everyone working in the industry. It’s important that all cannabis consumers are made fully aware of what they are purchasing and consuming. Following these product labeling standards will ensure that marijuana products are used safely, are secured in packaging not accessible to anyone under the age of 21, and that consumers have all the information about the product they require.”
Our Goal? NACB Standards = Regulator Resource
We believe the NACB Packaging and Labeling Standard – as with all the NACB National Standards to come - will one day serve as a critical resource to federal regulators. Membership in our SRO requires adopting all NACB National Standards. We hope you will provide feedback to the standard, but more importantly hope you will consider becoming an NACB Member. This is your opportunity to help shape the future of the industry while also demonstrating that compliance and operating above-board is of utmost importance to your company.
NACB Plans to Launch Blue Ribbon Affiliate Program for Ancillary Businesses
At the heart of the NACB’s mission is helping licensed cannabis businesses communicate that they operate ethically, responsibly and with integrity. Since our launch last year, hundreds of products and services companies that wish to work with our members and the greater cannabis community have contacted the NACB hoping for similar support. At the same time, our members have said that when it comes to identifying consultants, building supply manufacturers, payment systems, real estate firms, marketing agencies and other partners, they simply don’t know who to trust.
That’s why we are creating the NACB Blue Ribbon Affiliate Program. Products and services companies who are recognized as Blue Ribbon Affiliates will have been rigorously vetted by the NACB for ethics, integrity and fair trade practices, and join an exclusive group of businesses that are accepted by – and promoted to – the cannabis community as trustworthy partners.
Any product or services company interested in selling to NACB Members and other licensed cannabis businesses in the U.S. can apply to become a Blue Ribbon Affiliate. Learn more here.