Compliant packaging and labeling can get tricky in a highly regulated industry like cannabis.
1. Variable data content
One of the advantages of digital printing is that it can accommodate variable data. In Canada, variable data is already included in cannabis labels, listing the cannabis type, THC levels, and CBD levels while the label design template stays the same. A customer using an inkjet system could print a total of 5,000 labels in one run but print precisely as many of each design as needed, each customized with different cannabis types and levels to meet regulatory requirements and educate consumers.
2. No machine setup required
Digital printing eliminates machine setup, which reduces the time and labor required to complete each print run. Artwork can be sent to print and be put into production immediately. When a new product is needed, a new design can be submitted while the machine continues running. Customers can change packaging information to comply with local regulations or reflect different plant varieties and benefits, all without losing days or weeks due to reconfiguring equipment.
3. Excellent graphic quality
Digital printing is comparable in quality to offset printing, which is noticeable in smooth vignettes, appealing natural tones, and beautiful plant images. But while highly skilled print technicians may be needed to create plates and setup tools for mass production, digital printers can be operated by any employee familiar with the software. This lower labor cost brings high-quality graphics within reach of small-batch producers.
4. Targeted marketing
With quick setup and short runs, digital printing makes it cost effective to print whatever package designs are needed for recreational and medicinal users in every intended distribution area. There is no need for large pouch inventories, long lead times or one-size-fits-all packaging designs. Because digitally printed packaging can be produced quickly and inventories can remain small, packagers can adapt on the fly to tomorrow’s regulations and marketing opportunities while making effective use of time and supplies.
5. Packaging replaces the label
Packaging replaces the label: Because digital printers can be retrofitted onto existing converting equipment, packagers can produce one package size with as many different label designs as are required, without interruption. This means that an existing investment in converting systems can produce new types of products. With the cannabis market still growing and expanding, the packaging requirements for different markets will not be standardized in the foreseeable future.