18-691-1 Me. Code R. § 5

Current through 2023-3, January 18, 2023
Section 691-1-5 - Advertising
5.1 - Definitions

For the purposes of this subsection, the following terms are defined as:

A. "Advertising" means publicizing the trade name of a licensee together with words or symbols referring to cannabis or publicizing the brand or logo of cannabis or cannabis products.
B. "Brand" means a name, term, design or symbol that identifies a licensee's goods or services as distinct from those of other licensees.
C. "Handbill" is a flyer, leaflet or sheet that advertises cannabis.
D. "Logo" means a graphic mark, emblem or symbol used by a licensee to promote consumer identification and recognition of the licensee.
E. "Radio" means a system for transmitting sound without visual images, and includes broadcast, cable, on-demand, satellite or internet programming. Radio includes any audio programming downloaded or streamed via the internet.
F. "Television" means a system for transmitting visual images and sound that are reproduced on screens, and includes broadcast, cable, on-demand, satellite, or internet programming. Television includes any video programming downloaded or streamed via the internet.
5.2 - Prohibitions
A. In the course of promoting its brand or the brand of another licensee, cannabis or cannabis products, a cannabis establishment or licensee may not advertise in a manner:
(1) That is attractive to persons under 21 years of age;
(2) That promotes irresponsible use;
(3) That promotes activity that is illegal under Maine law;
(4) That is contrary to or in direct violation of state or federal consumer protections; or
(5) That otherwise presents a significant risk to public health and safety.
B. Advertising for a cannabis establishment may not:
(1) Contain statements that are deceptive, false or misleading;
(2) Display consumption of cannabis or cannabis products;
(3) Include claims related to potency (beyond listing of cannabinoid content);
(4) Depict activities or conditions considered risky when under the influence of cannabis, such as operating a motorized vehicle, boat or machinery, being pregnant or breastfeeding;
(5) Contain any content that can reasonably be considered to target or is designed to appeal particularly to individuals under the age of 21, including but not limited to images of persons under 21 years of age, cartoons, toys or similar images and items typically marketed towards persons under 21 years of age or references to products that are commonly associated with persons under 21 years of age or marketed by persons under 21 years of age;
(6) Contain any imitation of candy advertising;
(7) Include the term "candy" or "candies";
(8) Encourage the transportation of cannabis or cannabis products across state lines or otherwise encourage illegal activity;
(9) Assert that cannabis or cannabis products are safe because they are regulated by the Department or have been tested by a testing facility or otherwise make claims that any government agency endorses or supports cannabis;
(10) Make claims that cannabis has curative or therapeutic effects;
(11) Contain any health or physical benefit claims, including but not limited to health or physical benefit claims on labels or packaging; or
(12) Contain material that encourages excessive or rapid consumption.
C. No licensee or agent of a licensee may:
(1) Make any deceptive, false or misleading assertions or statements on any informational material, any sign or any document provided to a consumer;
(2) Distribute handbills in public areas or on publicly owned property;
(3) Utilize television, radio, print media or internet advertising in cases where there is a high likelihood it will reach person under the age of 21. Licensees or an agent of a licensee must take reasonable steps to ensure that any mass marketing or advertising does not reach persons under the age of 21, including, for example, using marketing information from the vendor or employing age verification techniques commonly used in internet advertising to avoid reaching persons under the age of 21;
(4) Utilize vehicle wraps or advertising affixed to any motor vehicle, except that a licensee may sell or give away stickers, including bumper stickers, with a total surface area of less than 36 square inches;
(5) Advertise within a prohibited distance of the property line of an existing public or private school, which shall be:
(a) A distance of 500 feet or more as established by the municipality in which the advertising is located;
(b) A distance of 500 feet or more as established by the Maine Land Use Planning Commission for advertising located in unorganized or deorganized areas; or
(c) A distance of 1,000 feet if no other distance has been set by a municipality or the Maine Land Use Planning Commission.
(6) Engage in advertising via marketing directed towards location-based devices, including but not limited to cellular phones, unless the marketing is a mobile device application installed on the device by the owner of the device who is 21 years of age or older and includes a permanent and easy opt-out feature; or
(7) Permit use of the licensee's trademarks, brands, names, locations or other distinguishing characteristics for third-party use on advertising in a manner that does not comply with this Section or any other statute, rule or regulation.
D. In the event a third-party has used licensee brand, trademarks, brands, names, locations or other distinguishing characteristics in an advertisement that does not comply with this Section or any other statute, rule or regulation, the licensee must immediately notify the Department, issue a cease-and-desist order to the third-party and pursue appropriate legal action.
5.3 - Websites

In addition to complying with the advertisement criteria and prohibitions outlined in Section 5.2, a cannabis establishment advertising on a website must utilize appropriate measures to ensure that individuals visiting the web page are over 21 years of age.

5.4 - Required Statements

A licensee must include the following statements, either in print or audio, on all print, television, radio and internet advertising in font size legible to the viewer or at a volume and speed that is readily understandable by the average listener:

A. "For use only by adults twenty-one years of age and older."
B. The license number of the cannabis establishment.
5.5 - Branding and Logos

A licensee may utilize a brand name or brand names and a logo or logos for the marketing, advertising or other promotion of the licensee's business, cannabis or cannabis products, provided that the use of the brand name or logo in advertising, marketing, signage, non-cannabis items (such as clothing, lighters or stickers), packaging and labeling does not violate the requirements of this rule. Branding and logos appropriate for use on marketing and advertising may not be acceptable for inclusion on packaging and labeling required on all cannabis and cannabis products in accordance with section 9 of this rule.

5.6 - Objectionable and Non-Conforming Advertising

The Department reserves the right to take action, including the use of punitive measures, against any licensee who fails to comply with the advertising provisions of this rule, including, without limitation, specifying a period of time by which the licensee shall cease the non-compliant advertising and remove any advertising still being published or displayed.

18-691 C.M.R. ch. 1, § 5