Licensing Update (Part II): Temp Inventory Tracking to Kick Off Soon
MONTPELIER – While today’s approval of the first cannabis retail licenses – more than two weeks ahead of schedule – will likely dominate headlines this week, the Vermont Cannabis Control Board shared other vital information for prospective licensees during the most recent meeting, especially around inventory tracking and packaging.
Specific tracking data points for cultivators were shown by the compliance team for the first time, and Board Member Kyle Harris reviewed child resistant packaging requirements.
Looking for the list of licenses from the 9/14 meeting? Check them out in Part I of today’s update.
The Board’s permanent tracking system will likely not be ready until early 2023. An interim inventory tracking system is being rolled out and is expected to be “up and running in the next few weeks.”
“Eventually we will have a system in place where you can log into your [Board] account and report [inventory] through an extension there. In the meantime, we’re going to ask that you report [inventory] through an electronic form that’s available on [the Board’s] website,” Chair of the Board James Pepper explained at today’s meeting.
All license types are subject to inventory tracking although this week Compliance Director Cary Giguere specifically presented criteria meant for cultivators. Everything from cannabis production and product production to transfers and sales must be recorded. These records must be reported every two weeks, at minimum. Indoor and outdoor grows should be separately reported for Mixed Tier cultivators.
Information that must be tracked for cultivators includes:
- date of planting
- date of harvest
- number of plants
- final dry flower weight
- final weight of usable dry trim
- weight of waste
- inputs used (i.e., fertilizer, pesticides, and soil amendments)
Brief insight into other license types’ reporting forms were offered today as well. Processors and manufacturers can expect to report how much extract was used in production, how much material was used to extract, and how many products were made. Wholesalers can expect to report what came in and what came out. Retailers can expect to report what was purchased and what was sold.
The various reporting forms including those for loss of inventory, transferring, manufacturing, cultivation, retail and production will become available for use on the Board’s website as placeholders until the formal tracking system is rolled out. The Board has stated they are hopeful the formal system will be in place by the start of 2023.
Board member Kyle Harris provided information on packaging requirements in terms of child resistance during today’s meeting. “[The Board] understands that plastic plays a heavy hand in meeting certain child resistant requirements,” Harris said.
In this vein, licensees seeking a waiver who will be packaging edibles and concentrates have been granted the ability to use a specific type of plastic lid produced by a company that Harris says has been extensively researched and meets Board requirements.
“However,” Harris continued, “that’s not the end all be all. There are many different options that meet child resistance from other sources.” Tin, aluminum, and even cardboard are some of the plastic alternatives that were mentioned as acceptable child resistant materials.
Packaged flower, on the other hand, does not require child resistant packaging. The child deterrent packaging requirements for flower can be satisfied through something as simple as a tamper-proof sticker over the top of a metal lid.
Other items to note from the packaging update:
- The opaque container requirement for flower can be satisfied by placing a label on the outside of a glass container.
- Compostable bags can be an option for most products aside from edibles.
- As the market matures, The Board aims to implement a container re-use program.
- For a refresher on the legislative definition of ‘child-resistant’ please refer to Act 158.
Board Executive Director Brynn Hare pointed out that the numbers found in the ‘total’ section up until the ‘Pending CCB Review’ column have remained relatively static as of late. This indicates the steady processing of applications done by the Board’s review staff.
Joined by Xusana Davis and Jay Greene of the Vermont Office of Racial Equity, the Board entered a brief Executive Session today to discuss three staff recommendations for Social Equity Status denial.
“The majority of our Executive Sessions are for applicants that are applying under the criteria of being from a community that has been historically disproportionately impacted [by prohibition],” Hare said in an effort to offer insight into what is discussed during these Sessions.
Social Equity Status may apply to an applicant who was impacted by a cannabis charge or prison sentence, or to an applicant who is from an area that was disproportionately impacted by prohibition. The latter requires more scrutiny and is harder to prove objectively, therefore requiring Executive Session more often than not.
Looking for the licensing approvals from the Wednesday, September 14 meeting? Check out Part I of today’s licensing coverage focused on approvals here.