Hierarchy: Marijuana Labels

A proposed, current typography issue: With the legalization of recreational marijuana in the US, the USDA will need to establish standards and practices in labeling and packaging. Since most growing businesses are not on a national level, a hierarchy in marijuana labels has not been standardized and varies among businesses and state lines.

Washington State Regulations
Recreational marijuana

Labels affixed to the container or package sold at retail must include:

  • The business or trade name and Washington state unified business identifier number of the licensees that produced, processed, and sold the usable marijuana
  • Lot number
  • Concentration of THC, THCA, CBD, including a total of active cannabinoids (potency profile)
  • Net weight in ounces and grams or volume as appropriate
  • Warnings that state: “This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming” &/or “For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Should not be used by women that are pregnant or breast feeding”
  • Statement that: “This product may be unlawful outside of Washington State”
  • Date of harvest

With this project, six hierarchies must be proposed that abide to the WA regulations. Only one typeface must be used, the design must stay in black and white, and the label must be 2″ squares intended for an intimate viewing distance.

Label 1, Label 2, Label 3, Label 4, Label 5, Label 6
Label 1, Label 2, Label 3,
Label 4, Label 5, Label 6

The hierarchy is pretty clear at first, in that the name of the strand should be the most important aspect on the packaging, as it differentiates this product from products next to it and is generally what people would refer to it as in conversation. In Labels 1,2,3,5,&6 the company name was emphasized, but what if no “brand names” emerge? Label 4 de-emphasizes the company name and emphasized the statistics on the effect of the product.