The high market demand for cannabis products has been supported by a growing trend supporting the legalization of marijuana throughout the country. Most recently, Illinois has become the 11th state in the United states to legalize marijuana for recreational use, joining the 22 other states that have legalized marijuana for medical use only. The expansion of new markets and increase in consumer acceptance leaves cannabis manufacturers facing the challenge of trying to forecast what products and policies might be expected in this rapidly evolving industry.
The market is crowded, but still growing. Many new cannabis companies are formed every year, yet the demand for cannabis has not yet been fully met. The ingenuity producers have employed in bringing new types of products to the market continues to expand, to the point where it can be difficult to narrow your choices down to only a few items upon which to expand your brand. Cannabis products might be packaging in glass bottles, plastic jars, flexible pouches, or decorative tins, as pointed out by market analysts, opening up new opportunities for innovation and responsiveness to the consumer.
Keep your packaging on-brand. Think about who you are trying to reach with your product, and then test your product design with members of that group who can give you their feedback. For example, one customer shopping for a CBD-infused skin lotion may respond to an artisanal style of packaging that uses natural, earth-tone materials. A different customer might be drawn to a similar product in packaging that echoes the look of exclusive, luxury cosmetic brands, with a spare, streamlined design and metallic accents. Exploring the emotional effect of elements of design such as container shape, color, materials, and texture can help you connect with your targeted market.
Practical matters are more important than ever. When you are competing with multiple items on the shelf, or if you want the store purchaser to choose your brand over many others, the quality and usability of your packaging will go a long way toward establishing the value of your brand. Some questions to discuss with your packaging partners include:
What is the best material to preserve the potency and freshness of my product?
How will the viscosity of my product affect my choices of pumps, sprays or droppers?
Will my clients have health issues, such as arthritis, that require special accommodations?
In what environments will my product be used? Should the container be water-resistant, UV-blocking, child-proof or visually designed for gift-giving?
Sustainability will help you stand out. 52% of buyers say they are positively influenced by a brand’s efforts to be environmentally conscious. Look into how your packaging choices might reduce waste, use recycled materials or be easy to recycle in turn, and then highlight these features to your customers.
Be adaptable to growth and change in your manufacturing process. Legislation is changing, and demand is increasing. Both trends will impact the way you do business, which makes designing your production system with flexibility in mind a smart strategy.
As an example, Colorado is drafting new legislation in response to increased occurrences of accidental ingestion, especially by children younger than eight. The newly-formed Office of Cannabis Management in New York will impose similar safety policies regarding recreational marijuana in that state. If these developments result in stricter packaging requirements for your type of product, you will need to be prepared to incorporate these changes, whether they involve shrink-wrapping, child-proof caps, induction sealing, or some other methods.
Even if you do not need to alter your packaging and filling process, you can still benefit by leaving room for growth in your business plan. With regards to your packaging equipment, seek out a manufacturer who can work with you as a partner. Some factors to consider are whether they guarantee the quality of their equipment, what level of customer support they offer, how long they are willing to work with their customers, how quickly they respond to any questions or issues, and what their turnaround time is for replacement parts or repairs.
Thinking about these upcoming trends will help you choose equipment and packaging that is well-matched to your current needs and will grow with the dynamic cannabis industry over time.
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Apex offers all of our clients customized solutions to their filling needs. Call us at 219-575-7493 or visit our page here to discuss the best equipment choices for you.