Product labelling: know the requirements
Along with the 4 “Ps” of marketing (product, price, place and promotion) comes packaging. Your packaging may be designed to attract buyers, but what must you include on the label to meet regulations? Learn how to label your consumer product while meeting the requirements of the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Act.
- In the case of a pre-packaged container, the label itself must be placed on the principal display surface — the complete side or surface of your product.
- There are 3 statements to present on your label. For example, if you're company XYZ and you make brand ABC bandages, you must state: the product identity (the generic name: bandages), the product net quantity (the weight or volume: 10 bandages), and the dealer's name and principal place of business (Company XYZ and Ottawa, Ontario).You must state the country of origin: Made in Canada.
- The product identity and net quantity must be shown in English and French. Products that are considered to be test market products are exempt from bilingual labelling for up to one year.
- If only upper case letters are used, the type height must be a minimum of 1.6 mm (1/16 inch). If lower case letters are used, the type height for the letter “o” must be 1.6 mm.
You must present all information on your product labels, both symbols and words, in a clear way. False or misleading representations are prohibited. You can't make any false performance claims; you have to be able to back them up. You must disclose all material details and information in your advertisements, and you can't sell above your advertised price. The objective is to be straightforward and clear with your customers.
Certain types of products have specific extra rules such as:
- If you are selling tobacco products, you must label them with graphic health warnings that cover 75 % of the external package and include health information messages within. Easy to understand toxic emission statements must be included as well.
- If you are selling food products, the core labelling requirements are unique. You must include the common name brand, date markings, and list of ingredients.
- If you are selling cosmetic products, the outer label must list all ingredients contained in the product. This allows your customers to understand any associated health risks, such as skin sensitivities or allergies.
Proper packaging and labelling of your products is a mandatory requirement. By following these regulations, you're presenting product information as clearly as possible, so that your customers can read and understand what they're buying. For more information, check out our marketing, advertising and sales regulations.