September 30, 2014
Since the passing of the pot legalization legislation in both Colorado and Washington State, I’ve been getting a lot of questions about cooking/baking with marijuana and the laws surrounding it. Similarly, lately I’ve also been getting a lot of questions about using alcohol in food products and what sort of labeling, testing, or consumer notification is required.
While both markets – ‘edibles’ for pot and alcohol-infused foods – offer entrepreneurs with potentially huge opportunities, I want to be upfront and say that I simply do not have the legal knowledge required on this topic to be able to speak comfortably about it. My understanding is that the edibles market alone, because it’s such a new ‘legal’ market, is something that state, federal, and local regulators are currently trying to figure out as well. With regards to alcohol in food, the allowances here may come down, in part, to local liquor laws.
All of this is to say that while there are business opportunities out there, if you decide to go down either of these routes make sure you do your due diligence regarding the safety of the product for consumers and what checkpoints you’ll have in place to ensure that safety at all times. You also need to understand what is going to be required from a licensing or labeling standpoint for your region and/or nationwide sales. As always, when in doubt, a lawyer is a great resource to call upon.