What do you need to run a successful dispensary? A vision, a plan, a reliable team, and of course: products people will love.
But apart from equipping your store with high quality herbs and the most wanted herb-infused products, you’ve got to have the necessary dispensary supplies to help sell your high quality buds, extracts, edibles and medicine. To help you make sure that your products will draw attention and make as much noise as possible, we’ve listed the must-have dispensary supplies that should be in your dispensary.
Broad Range of Packaging Options
There are many ways to package flowers, dry buds, concentrates and herb-infused goods. The choice will depend on the type of herb you plan to stock and your customers’ preferences. Ideally, your packaging must be able to contain the strong smell of herb, be able to protect the contents from rough handling and UV ray damage, and keep it fresh and potent.
Among the packaging options you can consider are as follows:
- Plastic Bottles & Containers. Plastic
containers are popular because they’re lightweight, cost-effective yet durable.
There are several kinds of plastic herb containers: pop
top bottles, hinged lid containers, and push and turn jars. Plastic
herb containers are typically made from food-grade polypropylene plastic which
is a versatile material with good air and moisture barriers. Plastic bottles and containers also gets a
plus for portability; they’re lightweight and can fit in a bag or pants’
- Glass Jars. Glass containers are said to
be the gold standard in herb packaging. They look elegant and are perfect
top-shelf containers. The crystal clear finish will allow you to display your
best buds. Glass is also durable and resistant to chemical changes so it won’t
leach odor, flavor, and unwanted compounds to your product. There are several
varieties of glass containers for flowers and concentrates. There are wide mouth
glass jars, glass containers with wooden lid, frosted glass concentrate jars,
glass dropper bottles for concentrates, no neck glass containers, and glass
jars with suction lid.
- Edibles Containers. From chocolate bars
and gummies to baked goods and beverages, herb-infused edibles come in various
forms. Packaging for these products also comes in different options: plastic box, puck jar, plastic hinged lid
containers, smell-proof pouches, resealable mylar bags, tin containers, and
- Exit Bags. In compliance with strict regulations in herb packaging, exit bags must be part of your dispensary supplies inventory. Exit bags are opaque pouches or bags that will contain your customer’s purchase so that when they leave your store, their purchase won’t attract attention. Exit bags are designed to be child-resistant, too, so that a patient or recreational consumer’s purchase won’t easily fall in the hands of children.
- Shrink Bands. If you want your products to look professionally packaged or if you want to build a better reputation by showing your concern for your customer’s safety, use shrink bands in your packaging. This may be an added cost – a minimal cost at that – but it can surely bring a huge difference in ensuring product integrity and building a better brand reputation.
Aside from having the right kind of packaging, your dispensary must also be equipped with materials or supplies to comply with labeling regulations.
There are specific warning labels for specific states. These warning labels may include state-specified graphics and text.
All labeling must be on the outside of the package or container and must unobstructed and conspicuous. The text must be in plain English and must easily be read by the consumer.
Processing and Handling Safety
Another area that must be carefully considered is the proper handling and processing of products. Safety procedures in storing and dispensing goods are critical to running a reputable dispensary that’s also compliant with state regulations. Here are a few supplies that your dispensary must have and use:
- Gloves & Tongs. Easy: no bare hands
policy. Physically handling flowers with bare fingers or hands is frowned upon
because oil, dirt or whatever matter there is in bare hands can transfer to the
product. Implement the use of gloves and tongs or chopsticks
when dispensing or handling herbs.
- Hairnets, Beard Covers, Shoe Covers. Who would want to find hair in their bud, in their medication? Nobody wants a dirty or contaminated product so make sure your budtenders practice proper hygiene and have their hair covered, literally. Hairnets and beard covers are easy to put on, inexpensive and effective in keeping your workers’ hands out of their hair and in ensuring that no strand of hair will come in contact with your product.
- Aprons. You know the importance of first impressions, right? And that cleanliness is key to customer experience. Picture a budtender with gloves on, wearing an apron and holding a pair of tongs while assisting a customer to inspect and smell a strain – that’s picture perfect. For sure, such sight will translate to better shopping experience for your customers, which means better sales for you.
Budtenders or your dispensary staff/workers are basically food and medicine handlers so ensure that they practice good personal hygiene and use protective gear and other product handling safety tools. It would be great if you can set up a wash station at a key location in your dispensary and promote good hand washing and sanitization practices. When your customers see that you value cleanliness – in the way your staff presents themselves, in the way the products are prepared, packaged, displayed and dispensed – they will see that their safety and satisfaction matters to you. Such can help your business shine for the long term.
The recent legalization of herb in several states have opened a new industry and if you’ve found yourself willing to be a part of this carefully regulated market, expect that it will cost you money and really, really, really hard work. For one, the laws and regulation surrounding the recreational and medical use of the controversial herb keeps changing and have always been confusing. Opening a dispensary means you always have to stay vigilant and on your toes. But if you stay informed and compliant, you’ll have a good chance of running a successful and lucrative dispensary.