Colorado beefs up the regulations for marijuana edible packaging.
Edibles are displayed at Shango Cannabis shop on first day of legal recreational marijuana sales beginning at midnight in Portland, Oregon, Oct. 1, 2015. REUTERS/Steve Dipaola

All medical and recreational edible cannabis in Colorado must be marked with a universal symbol as of Saturday. The new regulations have been in the works for a year and come from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment in partnership with the Colorado Department of Revenue’s Marijuana Enforcement Division.

The measure, which the state announced Monday, is an effort to raise edible awareness and prevent kids from getting their hands on THC loaded treats. The new symbol — an enclosed diamond with “! THC” or “! THC M” coding — on marijuana products comes along with a few other rules that go into effect Saturday, including banning the words “candy” or “candies” on marijuana product packaging. Wrapping must show the level of cannabis potency and contaminant testing information. Manufacturers must comply with the new regulations and retail stores and medical centers will only be allowed to sell edible items without the new logo and packaging requirements through Dec. 1. The latest regulations are a result of the updated House Bill 1261.

While the edible brownies may be the most commonly known type of ingestible marijuana products, they can come in a variety of forms that could be appealing to children, like cannabis lollipops, chocolate bars, gummy bears, rice crispy treats, caramel cubes and cookies.

The new symbol and packaging was a matter of public safety, Marijuana Enforcement Division Director Jim Burack told The Cannabist. The state expects full compliance from manufacturers and distributors.

“It’s about public health, and, above all, it’s sensitive to the risk this poses to children,” he said.

Colorado isn’t the only state that has mandated specific packaging for marijuana products to keep kids away from edibles. In Alaska, distributors are only allowed to sell retail marijuana in child-resistant packaging in compliance with legislation 3 AAC 306.345. All items must be wrapped in opaque, re-sealable, child-proof packaging that’s specifically difficult for children five and under to open. California’s Assembly Bill 266 requires cannabis products to come in tamper-evident packaging with the words, “SCHEDULE I CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE” and “KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN AND AMINALS” printed on all packaging along with a slew of other statements.