What Makes an Eco-Friendly Cannabis Product?

Stephen Andrews
31 May 2023

One of the green goals of every industry is to go environmentally and eco-friendly. Cannabis is a green economy on its own, but like any other industry, it has its fair share of environmental challenges that various companies are trying to address in order to reduce carbon footprint.

Probably the biggest environmental pressure created by the cannabis industry is spending vast amounts of water and electricity that cultivating crops demands. Indoor growing in particular can drain a lot of these resources. Outdoor growing at least saves tons of energy on artificial lighting and heating needed for the growing process. The solution is to use renewable energy sources, but not every company in the sector is there yet. 

One of the companies that have managed to achieve carbon neutrality by operating at 100% renewable energy is edible producer Wyld, famous for their luscious fruit-flavored gummies. The Oregon-based edible company also implemented compostable packaging in 2022, so they are one of the leaders when it comes to manufacturing eco-friendly cannabis products. 

Where cannabis companies have more room to act and work on offering more eco-friendly cannabis products is packaging. Beyond the outdated paper and plastic packaging, there are several alternative eco-friendly packaging solutions, and fortunately more and more cannabis brands are embracing these options.

When you see that the product packaging says it's "compostable," it means that the item can be broken down into natural elements. Another tag to look for in environment-friendly packaging is "biodegradable," which means the material used for the packaging will quickly break down in the environment with the help of natural decomposers. 

The obvious packaging alternative is hemp. Hemp has a minimal impact on the environment. When companies opt for hemp packaging, it makes sales much more sustainable than leading down a path to more harmful waste. 

In addition, there are nowadays tons of hemp-made eco-friendly cannabis products. One example is organic hemp paper. Several brands, including RAW and ZigZag, offer 100% pure hemp fibers designed for a slow-burn smoking experience and are much more eco-conscious than traditional paper rolls. 

Another example is organic CBD cosmetics such as soaps and lotions. Organic hemp cosmetics do not contain harmful toxins; they offer soft skin treatment and often an aromatic experience as they are infused with other natural extracts like lavender, rose, lemon, pine, vanilla, etc. All you need to verify if they are authentically organic is to see if they are made with certified organic oils or butter. 

Another eco-conscious innovation in packaging and produce is the use of ocean-reclaim plastics. The name is self-explanatory: it's plastic retrieved from the ocean. Some cannabis brands have taken the next level by creating products like ocean plastic pre-roll tubes, like Custom Cones USA, which even has a special line for child-proof tubes made from ocean plastics. 

Multi-state weed brand Chalice also uses sustainable packaging produced by Sana Packaging, a pioneer in reclaimed ocean plastics. Sana is credited for developing the industry's first pre-roll packaging made entirely from 100% reclaimed ocean plastic. Chalise uses recycled doob tubes for its curated Elysym Fields brand, a product line that includes rosin, live resin dabs, pre-rolls, and infused rolls, among other items. The packaging used for the Elysium Fields has helped recover more than 58 tons of plastic waste from oceans alone. 

Suppose environment and sustainability is a cause that you deeply believe in and care about, and you are looking for eco-friendly cannabis brands. In that case, green packaging and renewable energy spent are the first two things to look up about the brands you consider purchasing. Supporting such brands is good for everyone, and it's something that we all need to do more often and embed faster as a mainstream part of economy. 

Stephen Andrews