Cannabis: A Booming Industry
Cannabis Packaging is growing at an unprecedented rate, reaching $6.7 billion in sales in 2016. It is expected to grow to $50 billion by 2026. While it may still seem like this industry is relatively new (at least legally). The level of sophistication in the design and marketing of cannabis brands is rapidly accelerating. According to Ted Corless’s News Munchies blog, “Cannabis connoisseurs now care about the way marijuana has been managed. The density of the bud and the path it looks in a jar. Plus, cannabis packaging is everything. Some of the sought-after varieties come to us directly from celebrities, which perfectly combine brand and business.”
Compete Cannabis Packaging In The Retail Environment
With competition on the rise and regulation constantly changing from state to state, there is much for “mom-entrepreneurs” to consider when developing their products’ packaging, retail display, and marketing. Your product quality alone is not enough – you need to engage and educate the consumer within the retail environment to increase your market share and make significant sales. With this in mind, we’ve put together ten must-have pieces of information and guidance gathered from the Packaging Cannabis at The balcachem. They work directly with the cannabis industry daily.
1. The brand is KEY
Primary packaging in Cannabis Packaging is relatively similar in size and shape across brands, from bags and Mylar bags to tubes and jars. Because of these similarities, a well-crafted brand is the best way to stand out from the rest on the shelf. Adding a print directly to your packaging or attaching a colorful label is an absolute MUST to engage consumers. Make sure your branding is consistent across products and makes an excellent first impression. That doesn’t mean your product has to be the “loudest” on the shelf: many designer cannabis brands are going for a clean, simple look, which translates to an easy choice for shoppers. Consumers will often choose the better-branded product and associate it with increased quality.
2. Let your product say for itself
Many budtenders may not have tested the product you are marketing and, as a result, may not sell very well. By improving your packaging with content that can be monitored via smartphone and linked to your business website, additional product information, customer reviews and more, potential buyers can learn more about your product in the retail environment. At the same time, holding it in hand or viewing your screen behind the counter. Linked content delivered at the right time can be the extra education needed to convert a potential customer into an enthusiastic fan.
3. Don’t forget to educate dispensaries too!
Many producers are using sample kits to market their products in dispensaries. A custom corrugated box that showcases your product and brand well makes a great first impression and can spark company interest in your merchandise. Digital printing provides an excellent solution for short-run case orders like these, where full-color graphics make a significant impact.
4. Maximize shelf company in limited space
Safety and security are top preferences for cannabis retailers. By law, all dispensaries must lock up cannabis products, which means production cases are the norm in this environment. Due to the space limits this makes, brands need to maximize their presence with a highly graphic and compact retail display, making the most of their limited space behind glass.
5. Know the rules where you grow
It seems obvious, but it is critical to make sure you are up to date with the state’s laws to grow and distribute your product. They have their own set of directions and regulations, and they are all different somehow. Remember: no cannabis can travel outside the state in which it is grown!
6. Respond with agility to security and regulatory labeling
From state to form and year to year, safety and regulatory labeling requirements for cannabis products constantly change. Because of this, their packaging and labels often need to be updated to comply with new or revised laws. Traditional printing methods such as flexo and litho-lam can have high entry costs due to the required purchase of printing plates and relatively high minimum volume orders. And all of this investment can quickly go to waste when a new law goes into effect, and you’re left with unused packaging inventory on your hands. With the development of affordable, high-quality digital printing for both labels and corrugated packaging, brands can now order the exact quantities needed to package their supply until the following significant change arrives and then quickly adapt to it.
Change without buying new plates – they can update their digital graphics file and place their next order! Since most cannabis brands sell several different strains and have uniquely labeled packaging for each, the savings with digital printing can be significant considering just the number of printed versions. Find more information about digital printing here.
Cannabis brands are uniquely positioned to harness the industry’s rapid growth and consumer enthusiasm to push their brand to new heights. Discover better ways to connect with their audience through packaging. Digital printing offers so many options to get creative with your shelf presentation. You can easily change your artwork without a significant reinvestment of initial costs. Quick iterations to find what resonates with your audience are more accessible than ever to accomplish. And there’s plenty to play with, too: From product customization to variable graphic design, leading consumer brands show what’s possible in shelf impact (and ROI) with these techniques. Cannabis brands that do the same are sure to reap the benefits.
8. Buy in bulk where possible
Not all pieces of your packaging will have the potential to change as frequently as your labels. The order in bulk to lower your cost per item for primary packaging items like bags, pouches, bottles, and jars. Larger quantities = more considerable savings! If you’re currently ordering in volumes based on what you’ll need for your next shipment or two, consider partnering with a packaging provider that offers just-in-time inventory and warehousing services. This way, you can secure cost savings from a large order but only stock what you’ll need right away.
9. Save Labor and Time With a Label Applicator
Adding a label applicator to your community line speeds up your product packaging process. You can fulfill your orders quickly and improve your bottom line if you’ve been in the company with a constant dispensary retail base for a few years. You should consider this time-saving option!
10. Consider your Cannabis Packaging production timeline – Don’t wait until the last minute!
Because packaging plays such a significant role in the retail success of your product, hopefully, you’re planning your production schedule from the start. You can’t afford it. Traditionally printed packages (flexo, litho-lam) can take more than a month to produce. Fortunately, digital printing can deliver projects as short as 10-14 business days (5-10 for repeat orders). Talk to your packaging partner about your schedule and put it on your plan. Don’t give your Cannabis Packaging the short end of the stick and think about it at the last minute—it pays to plan.
Well, there you have it! 10 incredible facts about packaging for cannabis businesses, straight from the experts themselves. Remember, the only constant changes. For cannabis businesses willing to combine planning and creativity, the sky is the limit for how high their businesses can fly.