How to Read a Cannabis Product Label

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Knowing how to read a cannabis product label can be incredibly helpful during the cannabis buying process. Most cannabis labels contain a great deal of information about the specific product they’re on, including the name of the product and the strain it comes from. If you aren’t familiar with cannabis labeling, you may struggle to pick out a product that is a good fit for you. 

Cannabis Labels: The Breakdown

Most cannabis labels will include several key details. Among these, you’ll find:

  • The manufacturer that produced your product 

Some people prefer to use only products that come from specific companies that they trust while others may prefer to try a wider range of products from different providers.

  • The cultivator that grew and processed the cannabis for the specific product

You may prefer products from specific cultivators, especially if you find that there’s a particular strain that you enjoy.

  • The name of the specific product

With a name, you can easily identify products that you enjoy.

  • The strain type

Do you prefer a sativa, indica, or hybrid strain? The label will be able to tell you what type of strain is in the product.

  • The specific strain

 Learning strain names can help you choose the precise product you’re looking for, depending on your preferred aroma, CBD or THC content, and more. 

  • Specific information about the product you’re purchasing, including its weight, harvest date, and timeline
  • Cannabinoid content information

Cannabinoids are the specific compounds found in cannabis that create the response users are looking for, including that familiar “high”. Understanding what cannabinoids are present in your product can help you get a better idea of what type of high you will experience. Your label should also include information about how much of those cannabinoids, usually measured by weight or percentage, are in your product. 

  • Terpenes contained in the product

Terpenes help create the familiar aroma or flavor of each cannabis product. Terpenes can also help create some of the effects you might feel from cannabis consumption, including pain relief, increased energy, and anxiety relief. As you become more familiar with your response to specific terpenes, you can more effectively select products that will help create the effect you’re looking for.

If you purchase an edible, oil, or another product in which the cannabis is diluted or combined with additional ingredients, you’ll also need to take a look at the ingredient list on the package. The package should list all of the product’s ingredients clearly so that you can easily avoid substances that you may not like or that you might be allergic to.

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Common Terms You’ll Find on Your Cannabis Labels

Once you’ve taken a look at the product label, you may want to take a deeper look at the terms on the label and what they mean. Whether it’s your first time choosing a cannabis product, or you’ve used it regularly in the past, understanding the terms listed on the label can help you make better decisions about which product is right for you. Of course, if you have questions, you can always consult the budtenders at a cannabis dispensary near you to learn more about the products you’re considering. 

Full-Spectrum CBD

Full-spectrum CBD products contain all the compounds that occur naturally in cannabis, including THC: the substance that produces the “high” for many cannabis users. Hemp-derived CBD products usually contain relatively little THC (no more than 0.3% of the dry weight), but other products may contain higher levels of THC.

Broad-Spectrum CBD

Broad-spectrum CBD still contains most of the compounds that are naturally found in cannabis, but the product has had the THC removed, or the majority of the THC removed, in order to provide a product that is less likely to generate any psychoactive effects on the user.

CBD Isolate

CBD isolate products do not contain any THC. Instead, these products have completely isolated the CBD contained within them, which means that you’ll get a pure CBD product. Yummi Karma’s Beauty Sleep CBD Tincture is one great example of a CBD isolate.


Indica is one of the primary types of cannabis strains. It generally creates a soothing, calming effect and is known for its sedative high. Fiore’s OZ Kush is one great product for users seeking the calming effects of the Indica strain.


Sativa, the other primary type of cannabis strain, is generally known for an energy-boosting high that helps improve creativity and general focus. For users seeking the energy-boosting, creative effects that Sativa can have, we recommend trying West Coast Cure’s Passion Orange Guava product.


A hybrid product has traits of both indica and sativa products and may create a high that has both effects. Most cannabis products on the market today are hybrids of some type, and the line between indica and sativa products has blurred substantially over the years. However, strains labeled as hybrids usually have a combination of effects. For users with a sweet tooth looking to try a hybrid product, one great option is Dr. Norm’s Max – Chocolate Chip Single 100mg Mini Cookie.

Keep in mind that different products will impact people differently, and you may not know ahead of time how you will respond to a specific product.


THC is the compound in cannabis that creates the “high” many people are looking for when they choose to use a cannabis product. 


CBD is one of the chemical compounds found in cannabis. Often, people who use cannabis for its medicinal effects are looking for the impact of the CBD. Unlike THC, CBD does not create a high in most users.


Both full-spectrum and broad-spectrum products should contain a list of cannabinoids and the other compounds found in your particular cannabis product. You may see terms like:

  • Cannabidolic acid (CBDA)
  • Cannabinol (CBN)
  • Cannabigerol (CBG)
  • Cannabichromene (CBC)

If you do not see these compounds listed on the label, you may have found a product trying to masquerade as cannabis without actually containing the THC or CBD you need to create a high or achieve the medicinal effects often associated with cannabis. Most dispensaries, including recreational  dispensaries, will screen out imitation products. However, if you get your CBD products from another source, you may need to read your label more carefully. 

Find a Dispensary Near You

If you’re looking for a dispensary near you, including dispensaries in the Orange County or Santa Ana areas, Planet 13 Dispensaries has everything and more you’re looking for! Contact us today to learn more about our locations or for help reading the labels on our cannabis products. We can help you understand the cannabis you’re consuming and its benefits.