Starting in October 2019, cannabis edibles will become legal for sale in Canada. Since the advent of cannabis legalization across the country, various questions have been asked by consumers and manufacturers.
Edible cannabis or “edibles” can take many forms including brownies, cookies, candies, and even pizza sauce. For those looking for more “calorie friendly” options, you can consume cannabis edibles in tincture form, drinks including teas, sodas, and coffees, dissolvable powders, and simple capsules.
Edible cannabis is different, as the absorption takes place through gastrointestinal uptake, oral uptake, or a combination of the two. The cannabinoids find their way into the bloodstream, but to be effective, any type of edible must be “decarboxylated.” This is a process where heat is applied to the cannabis plant material to activate the THC content.
When you heat the cannabis, the less inert compound; THCA is converted into the psychoactive THC, resulting in an accompanying high.
For food manufacturers, a new set of questions regarding what needs to be included on cannabis edibles packaging have now emerged. This article will examine what you need to know about cannabis edibles nutrition labels.
Nutrition Label Requirements
For label requirements, Health Canada requires some standard format specifications for typeface and fonts which include:
- Regular weight (except where indicated) and with standard sans serif font, unitalicized, in the colour black
- One single font type
- A type size of at least 6 points and smaller than the type size used for the Health Warning Message
- 6 point font outset
- All units are to be represented in the metric system and displayed in the abbreviated form. Using grams as an example, they would appear as a small letter g.
The bilingual nutrition labels require the following information and style:
- Nutrition Facts / Valeur nutritive – this heading is to be in bold
- Per Container / Par contenant – non-indented with space for a two-digit numeral
- Calories – non-indented, to appear in bold type and to include space for a three-digit numeral typically used in this value
- Fat / Lipides – non-indented with space for a two-digit value in g
- Saturated / saturés – indented with space for a two-digit value in g
- + Trans / + trans – indented with space for a two-digit value in g
- Carbohydrate/ Glucides – non-indented with space for a two-digit value in g
- Fibre / Fibres – indented with space for a two-digit value in g
- Protein / Protéines – non-indented with space for a two-digit value in g
- Cholesterol / Cholestérol – non-indented with space for a three-digit value in mg
- Sodium – non-indented with space for a four-digit value in mg
- Potassium – non-indented with space for a four-digit value in mg
- Calcium – non-indented with space for a four-digit value in mg
- Iron / Fer – non-indented with space for a two-digit value in mg
The border of the nutrition facts is in black and is a solid line of 1 point. It also has an inset of at least 6 points on all sides. The right side will contain % DV (Daily Value) / % VQ (valeur quotidienne). Saturated and Trans fats are important values for many consumers at the moment, and they will have a value against them to be centred on the right side.
The values will also require a space between the number and the unit.
For packaging requirements, there are two different categories for edibles, but both need to follow the same requirements. The two different categories are:
- Edible Cannabis (solid)
- Edible Cannabis (beverage)
They set the THC limit for these products at 10 mg and as far as the product rules, there is to be no added vitamins or minerals. There are limits on caffeine content if it’s included in the product, and it can have no added alcohol.
The packaging itself needs to appear plain and also needs to be child-resistant. Furthermore, the packaging must not look appealing to kids. As far as the label, it needs to contain the standard cannabis symbol for products that contain THC, along with a health warning message.
The ingredient list must be included in the packaging, along with the THC/CBD content. You must also list possible allergens and a nutrition facts table. It’s also important that your packaging does not include health or dietary claims. The last requirement for packaging is that there needs to be no elements that would associate the product with alcoholic beverages or brands of alcohol.
MenuSano Nutrition Analysis Software For Cannabis Edibles
If you’re creating cannabis edible products, there is a lot to be aware of. MenuSano ensures that you’re on the right path, providing you with the ideal solution. MenuSano is an intuitive nutritional analysis tool to help you quickly and accurately determine the nutrition facts of your cannabis edible products.
You will have all the nutrition information required and will be able to share it with your customers online, or anywhere else needed. People demand accurate information in the foods they consume, and your nutrition facts labels need to reflect this. Accurate nutritional information on your packaging and labels provides your customers assurance and promotes loyalty in your product.
MenuSano allows you to complete your nutritional analysis much quicker and cost-effective, compared to sending it to a laboratory. The analysis can be done on your computer, in-house. The simple process involves you inputting your ingredients into recipes, assembling your recipe to form your product, and then downloading and printing an accurate nutrition facts label.
With so many variables to be aware of with the legalization of cannabis edibles, we understand the need to ensure that you have all of your bases covered. Cannabis edibles present a whole new set of problems that involve accurately informing your customers about what they are consuming. You don’t want to leave anything to chance, and MenuSano’s software is designed with food producers like you in mind. Providing accurate information allows for accountability and builds trust between you and your customer for years to come.