Common Issues with Plastic Cannabis Packaging (And How to Avoid Them)

Image courtesy of Drug Plastics & Glass Co. Inc.

An important but sometimes overlooked detail for a new cannabis business is the product packaging. The packaging design for your cannabis product is vital to establishing your brand and building a loyal customer base. Your packaging can significantly impact your business: from keeping your products safe and secure, to your sales volume and profitability, and ultimately, your bottom line.

Unfortunately, with any type of packaging, problems can occur. If your cannabis packaging is low quality, it can negatively affect your business over the long haul. If you opt to use plastic cannabis packaging, there are defects that you can avoid. Look out for these common red flags:


Discolored or Dirty-Looking Plastic

Carbonized resin is material trapped inside the resin used to produce the plastic container. It can make your cannabis packaging look discolored, dirty, or worse, contaminated. If there is trapped material in the resin, it can erode consumer confidence in your product and brand very quickly, greatly impacting your ability to grow a customer base and will likely result in lost sales.


Improperly Spec’d Material

Plastic cannabis packaging that looks great and performs perfectly is the result of careful engineering. If the wrong material or material weight is chosen for your packaging, it can make your bottles appear deformed. Although the cannabis product inside isn’t necessarily damaged, this issue can make the overall look of your product appear low-quality.


Raised Mold Seams

A raised mold seam (or side seam) is the result of a misaligned die or improper removal of excess flash material on the bottle during the manufacturing process. When the seam is raised, it can cause abrasions when a label is applied to the bottle and reduces the readability of the labels or can make them illegible to consumers. This makes your product look unprofessional.


Excess Bottom Flash

Similar to raised mold seams, excess bottom flash occurs when extra plastic material is not removed from the bottom of the bottle during the manufacturing process. This causes bottle stability issues and provides a poor printing surface, which diminishes the brand impression of your cannabis product.


Uneven Sealing Surface

It is important for a plastic cannabis bottle and closure to work perfectly together. A crucial part of that relationship is ensuring a proper seal. If a bottle top is unevenly manufactured, it can result in a poor closure seal. This puts your cannabis product at risk of contamination as well as decreased consumer confidence in the safety of your product.

Image courtesy of Drug Plastics & Glass Co. Inc.

Partner with the Right Manufacturer

The most effective way to avoid issues like these is by partnering with the right manufacturer. Doing so will help you create packaging that makes your brand stand out, while increasing profitability and minimizing risk. Here are a few questions to ask your potential cannabis packaging partner:

Consistent Product Manufacturing — do they have state-of-the-art production equipment and software to ensure consistent product quality – each and every time?

Compliance with Regulations — the cannabis industry faces more and more complex regulatory challenges every day. Is your packaging being manufactured in compliance with all FDA regulations, as well as individual state regulations?

Made in the USA — does your manufacturer use resin that is produced overseas? If so, the resin may have impurities that can affect the integrity of your cannabis product. In addition, internationally sourced materials may not have documentation of origin or comply with strict regulations.

Customized for Your Brand — does your cannabis packaging manufacturer have the capability to customize their products to your exact specifications? Your product is unique, and your packaging should reflect that. Make sure your brand stands out with the exact image you want to project.

Reliable Supply Chain — does your packaging manufacturer have suppliers that share a commitment to providing on-time delivery and properly spec’d materials? Do they have flexible scheduling, and strategically located facilities across the US? You shouldn’t find yourself waiting for products to arrive when promised or deal with missed deadlines that cause problems in your filling process.

What Image Does Your Packaging Convey?

Proper packaging is essential to building and maintaining consumer confidence in a new cannabis business. In many ways, the packaging is the product, so you must ensure that it reflects the image you want to project. You have many choices when designing your packaging and selecting who manufactures it. Be sure to partner with a supplier that has eliminated defect-producing sources from their manufacturing processes and complies with US regulations. A trusted supplier will help you grow your cannabis business now and into the future.


Author Bio

Danielle Antos is the Marketing Project Manager at Drug Plastics & Glass Co., Inc. Located in Boyertown, PA, Drug Plastics is the leading manufacturer of HDPE bottles, PET bottles, and plastic closures for cannabis, medicinal, and wellness products. Drug Plastics is committed to making people’s lives better by producing packaging that is functional, easy to use, and safe.


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