If you plan to expand your product line to include CBD for pets, do these things first.
Ten years ago, if you were to ask the average person if they thought CBD products would be available for their dog or cat, they would probably have thought you were speaking nonsense. Now, pet CBD for pets is a $125 Million industry. But don’t think that just because these products are marketed and intended for animals that the requirements for testing, labeling, and packaging aren’t strict.
If you’re planning on expanding your CBD empire to include your customers’ furry friends, too, you’re going to need to do two things:
- Get familiar with the regulations specific to pet CBD oil.
- Plan how you’ll expand your production to meet increased demand.
If you’re already making CBD products for human use, the transition won’t feel like reinventing the wheel. Let’s go over what you need to know before you get started expanding your product line.
Why Pet CBD Products?
CBD pet products are not intended to get your cat or dog high. They contain little to no THC, just like many store-bought CBD products designed for people. The difference is that the CBD is packaged in a more palatable way for animals while still giving them the desired effects. Reducing anxiety, calming nerves, seizure control, and lowering inflammation are possible reasons owners give CBD oil to a pet.
Typical pet CBD products include:
- Treats/Chews: Since pets probably already get treats, a chew infused with CBD is an easy way to get it into their system.
- Pills: If pets don’t have a tough time taking medication, this may be a good option.
- Tinctures: CBD tincture and oil are ideal. Using a dropper, owners can give specific doses to pets in their daily food.
- Lotions: CBD-infused lotions aren’t just for people; they work great for animals, too — and pet owners love them.
Traditionally CBD oil for pets has been marketed for dogs, but now cat-focused products are on the market.
Avoid Pet CBD Health Claims
You're probably familiar with the FDA's stance on making overt health claims for CBD. It's no different for CBD pet products. If your packaging makes any specific claims regarding health benefits, the FDA will treat that product as a drug and send you "cease and desist" letters. This is also true for implied claims. The difference between overt and implied claims can be demonstrated in these examples:
- Overt: These CBD chews will eliminate your dog's arthritis.
- Implied: Research has shown that CBD oil mitigates inflammation in cat's joints.
Your branding and packaging must have careful wording. Your product will need to be positioned as a supplement rather than a drug to avoid the FDA's wrath. So far, there is only one FDA-approved CBD oil-based treatment for animal seizures, and that's Epidiolex. It's also incredibly expensive, but it is still the only treatment a vet can prescribe.
Specific Pet CBD Requirements
You might be familiar with these FDA requirements for human CBD products, but to make sure you know what they’re expecting regarding CBD pet products, here they are:
- Ingredients: Declare all ingredients in a complete list.
- Disclosure: Anything and everything customers need to know about using the product.
- CBD Product Identity: Declare that the product contains CBD and the intended use.
- Net Quantity: Amount of product, whether weight or liquid volume.
- Warning Statement: If there are any possible side effects or complications, list them.
- Contact: The manufacturer’s contact information.
Again, to drive the point home, no health claims! Be specific, be honest, and make your labels legible, too. Even if you have all the right information, the FDA will ding you if the font is too small or unreadable.
Clearly Communicate With Your Pet Owner Customers
Your label must communicate to your consumers what they're getting. Honesty leads to trust. Pet owners read labels for CBD ingredients and the problem it solves before deciding whether your product is worth giving to their dog or cat. To be effective, your product needs to deliver 1 to 2 milligrams for every 10 pounds of weight. If it's not possible to dose that amount with your product, it won't be effective.
Trust has been broken with the public by some more unscrupulous or ignorant producers. Tests show that many products on the market don't contain adequate amounts of CBD oil, whether through poor manufacturing or by companies looking to make a buck off a growing market segment. Your CBD pet products need to be different. Poor word of mouth due to an ineffective product can tank your sales and ruin your reputation.
Crossing State Lines with CBD Pet Products
You may be familiar with the difference between interstate and intrastate commerce, thanks to your current CBD product line. The same restrictions apply to CBD oil for pets, too. If you’re currently manufacturing CBD products in a state that allows them, you should have no problem crafting new CBD products for pets. The problem comes if you try to start selling over state lines or engaging in interstate commerce. Intrastate commerce is where you need to stay lest you anger the FDA.
How to Choose the Right Labeler for Your CBD Oil for Pets & Other CBD Pet Products
As you expand your product line and enter a new market segment, you’re going to need to tool up. Look for a labeling partner who knows your industry's ins and outs and can recommend the right equipment for line, budget, container shape, and label type. Pack Leader USA has put together this CBD Manufacturer’s Guide to Labeling Equipment to help you make the right choice for your production line. The regulatory hoops may feel like they’re tough to jump through, but Pack Leader USA is here to help you jump through them.