Starting Sunday, you’ll no longer be allowed to buy gummy bear-shaped cannabis edibles in Colorado. That’s because the state’s ban on “child-friendly” edible shapes will be going into effect this weekend.
In addition to the gummy bear form, other shapes like fruits, cartoons, humans, and animals will all be banned. Moreover, manufacturers will not be allowed to label cannabis edibles with terms like “candy,” either. Edible potency, itself, will be limited to ten milligrams of THC per serving, which for some is considered a microdose (edible doses can range from 2.5 milligrams of THC to more than 50 milligrams).
Colorado’s new policy on edibles also mandates that the packaging be childproof, that consumers be educated about edibles’ delayed effects, and that the product’s testing information and THC symbol appear on the packaging. As should be well-known by now, it can take up to two hours for full effects of an edible to set in. If a person isn’t feeling high after the first half hour or so, they may end up regretting it if they eat more too soon.
“I was heartened in the edibles arena about how quickly industry understood that it was in the long-term interest of everybody that they got commonsense edibles regulations in place,” said Andrew Freedman, Colorado’s former director of Marijuana Coordination. He said that cannabis products appearing like children’s candy were “not a good image to be in our national newspapers.”
As the industry becomes more mainstream and widespread, it’s important for parents and schools to teach children about the real facts of cannabis. Whether an edible looks child-friendly or not, children should know the difference between cannabis, alcohol, and other intoxicants, accepting that the former two can be used safely but only at the right age.
Moreover, not only for children’s sake, but for everyone else, more explicit edible packaging, paired with smaller dosing, may help people take more intentional doses of cannabis and avoid unpleasant freak-outs. After all, when the body metabolizes THC, the main psychoactive compound in cannabis, your gut releases an enzyme that could make the experience a bit more psychedelic or make the THC feel stronger. Not everyone is prepared for this — and for the industry to be respected from the outside and safe for everyone involved, consumers need better information about edibles.