The Canadian government may be legalizing weed, but they really don’t want you to get excited about it. As the Liberals’ marijuana bill gets increasingly closer to becoming law, the government is getting into the nitty gritty details of legalization. On Monday, Health Canada released guidelines and proposals for the packaging registered pot retailers will be able to use for their products.
— GovCanHealth (@GovCanHealth) March 19, 2018
The packages are plain with a stop sign warning that the product inside contains THC (duh) and a yellow caution label warning pregnant and breastfeeding women from using it. The design also features a child-resistant seal and warnings to keep away from children. Packaging is also forbidden from featuring fluorescent or metallic colours. So basically, it’s pretty boring. And everyone noticed.
so here’s what legal weed packaging may look like–wonder if the people behind the Ontario Cannabis Store logo came up with this exciting design: pic.twitter.com/BaVUXHQtKO
— Manisha Krishnan (@ManishaKrishnan) March 19, 2018
This packaging is designed to make me not want to smoke weed but really it just makes me want to smoke more because I’m so angry.
— Lilian Tran (@liltranwreck) March 20, 2018
How long before I mistake my weed for my David’s Tea collection? pic.twitter.com/v5Zpx4zvVN
— Erin Tolley (@e_tolley) March 19, 2018
The packaging is meant to be super plain so that kids and teens don’t think marijuana looks fun or cool in any way (like that ever stopped teens before). A note to the government: if people were willing to ignore all your “don’t do drugs” campaigns, buy pot illegally and were unfazed when their product came in Ziplock baggies, your boring packaging isn’t going to discourage them now.
There’s one person out there who doesn’t think the packaging is boring enough. Senator Denise Batters spoke in the Senate Wednesday and pointed out that the red and white THC stop sign looks very similar to the Team Canada hockey logo. Because it’s also red and white with a leaf. She thinks that the association between the logo and the warning will “appeal to young people” and make weed seem cool. Gasp!
“When I saw that symbol, I immediately thought ‘That really looks like the Team Canada hockey logo.’ So I Googled it,” she said. She then held up two printouts of recent iterations of the Team Canada hockey logo. Sure enough, they looked like red and white leaves. She suggested that the “Canada” emblazoned on the bottom of one logo could be switched to “cannabis” and look almost the same.
Director general of cannabis legalization and regulation Eric Costen responded by saying that red is recognized universally as a “stop” signifier (see: red stop signs and red traffic lights) and the hexagon shape around the leaf is modelled after the shape of a stop sign.
That didn’t stop Senator Batters from tweeting about the similarity. She posted the two Team Canada logos alongside the proposed THC warning.
#Trudeau govt says #marijuana legalization law prohibits advertising “appealing to young people”. Yet, image 1 is Health Canada-designed marijuana logo. Images 2 & 3 are @TeamCanada hockey logos. Exact colours. So similar. #NotAppealingToYouth? #C45 pic.twitter.com/Htv7TagTuk
— Sen. Denise Batters (@denisebatters) March 21, 2018
The response online was not really in Batters’ favour. Many Twitter users pointed out that the stop sign is fairly universal so the hockey association was not one readily made by anyone looking at the design. It’s also unclear what a better symbol would be to denote “STOP.”
— Jeremy Brown (@ThatJBrown) March 22, 2018
were you high when you came up with this?
— Shane (@shanessm) March 22, 2018
— hippersons (@hippersons) March 22, 2018
Are you being purposefully daft? I can’t tell, because I assume anyone with your title would know what a stop sign is.
— Dylan Ames ⚖ (@LDTG117) March 21, 2018
Well Denise how did this tweet work out for you ? Good thing so many Canadians knows what a stop sign looks like.
— GrumpyGrannie (@grumpy_grannie) March 22, 2018
Despite Batter’s notes on package design, Bill C-45 passed its scheduled vote in the Senate Thursday, inching it ever closer to becoming the law of the land.