CHANGE IS ON THE HORIZON
Certain cannabis-infused candy could start vanishing from store shelves across Washington next year.
In an article published by the Seattle Times, the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) announced it is going to ‘reevaluate’ all edible cannabis products after public complaints that some products on store shelves are appealing to children. In particular, the WSLCB identified colorful gummy-style and hard candies as primary areas for regulatory inspection and action.
In response to these complaints, the WSLCB provided a presentation during the October 3 board meeting to inform the community that action is being taken on this issue.
What does this means for edible producers?
The presentation provided examples and criteria that will be utilized when evaluating edibles. Depending on the type of edible you produce, be aware of the following:
Producers of hard candies, tarts, fruit chews, colorful chocolates, jellies and “gummy” items:
- Do not make new products
- Continue selling your existing edible inventory until you run out, or until April 3, 2019, whichever occurs first. If you do not sell all of your products before April 3, 2019, the inventory must be destroyed following WAC 314-55-097
Producers of drinks, baked goods, capsules, chips and crackers, sauces and spices, and tinctures:
- Now — These products will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Approval of chocolates, cookies, caramels and mints will depend on factors like frosting, sprinkles and whether they’re dipped in colorful coating.
- By January 1st — Resubmit all labels and products to the WSLCB to meet the rule change, which goes into effect on Jan 1, 2019. During this product evaluation, licensees will be notified in writing if the product does not meet the requirements or if their product approval is being rescinded. The notification will include information about your appeal rights.
The WSLCB plans to hold a webinar on October 16 to address questions about its reevaluation of edibles. A link to register for the webinar will be available on the WSLCB website .
The Cannabis team at JDSA Law has been working with the cannabis industry since 2013 and has assisted many clients in the process of re-assessing business plans, and creating opportunity out of these types of rule changes.