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Marijuana Legalization and Advertising Restrictions in the United States


Data as of August 2017


With a growing number of states legalizing the use of marijuana, marketers are increasingly looking to market a new set of products. To help publishers receiving this advertising, IAB has compiled a list of state marketing regulations related to marijuana and related products. This material is for reference only, and is not legal advice; publishers and marketers should consult counsel before proceeding.

Hover your mouse over a state to see details, or click any state for a full description below.

 

Key:

  • = states with no marijuana legalization
  • = states with legalized marijuana and restrictions for digital advertising/marketing
  • = states with legalized marijuana and no restrictions for digital advertising/marketing
 

Note: This chart does not survey the regulation of marijuana products in other channels, such as print or broadcast television. Additionally, it does not include a survey of criminal statues related to the advertisement of drug paraphernalia. The survey identifies relevant statutes in jurisdictions where marijuana sales have been legalized.

For more info on IAB Public Policy, click here.

 

Choose a U.S. State Above to View Details

Alabama

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Alaska

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Arizona

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Arkansas

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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California

“Advertising”

Statute restricts the distribution of any form advertising for physician recommendations for medical cannabis in California unless the ad includes a certain notice.


“Operator of Internet Web site, or online or mobile application directed to minors; marketing or advertising; products and services prohibited”

Statute prohibits an operator of an Internet Web site, online service, online application, or mobile application directed to minors from marketing or advertising drug paraphernalia, including marijuana paraphernalia.


“Advertising and marketing standards”

Statute provides that all advertisements and marketing shall accurately and legibly identify the licensee responsible for its content, by adding, at a minimum, the licensee’s license number.

Statute prohibits technology platforms from displaying advertisements by a licensee on an Internet Web page unless the advertisement displays the license number of the licensee.

Statute provides that advertising or marketing placed in digital communications must be limited to where at least 71.6 percent of the audience is reasonably expected to be 21 years of age or older.

Statute provides that all advertising must be truthful and appropriately substantiated.

Statute requires advertising or marketing that involves direct, individualized communication or dialogue controlled by the licensee to use an age affirmation method to verify that the recipient is 21 years of age or older prior to engaging in that communication or dialogue.


“Prohibitions; false or misleading advertising or marketing; advertising or marketing to minors”

Statute prohibits licensees from: advertising or marketing in a manner that is false or untrue in any material or that tends to create a misleading impression; publishing or disseminating advertising or marketing containing any statement concerning a brand or product that is inconsistent with any statement on the label of the brand or product or that creates the impression that the cannabis originated in a particular place or region unless the label bears an appellation of origin and that appellation of origin appears on the advertisement; advertising or marketing cannabis or cannabis products in a manner intended to encourage persons under 21 years of age to consume cannabis or cannabis products; or publishing or disseminating advertising or marketing that is attractive to children.


“False or misleading health related statements”

Statute prohibits licensees from publishing or disseminating advertising or marketing containing any health-related statement that is untrue in any particular manner or tends to create a misleading impression as to the effects on health of cannabis consumption.


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Colorado

“Advertising: Internet”

Rule restricts Retail Marijuana Establishment from advertising via the Internet absent reliable evidence that no more than 30 percent of audience is reasonably expected to be under the age of 21.


“Advertising: Targeting Out-of-State Persons Prohibited”

Rule prohibits advertising in a medium designed to target individuals outside of the state of Colorado.


Rule prohibits advertisements asserting that products are safe because they are regulated by the State Licensing Authority.


Rule prohibits advertising asserting that products are safe because they are tested by a Retail Marijuana Testing Facility.


“Advertising: Advertising via Marketing Directed Toward Location-Based Devices”

Restrictions on advertising directed toward 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 year of age or older and includes a permanent and easy opt-out feature.


“Pop-Up Advertising”

Rule restricts the use of pop-up advertisements on the internet.


“Retail Marijuana Product” means a product that is comprised of Retail Marijuana and other ingredients and is intended for use or consumption, such as, but not limited to, edible product, ointments and tinctures.


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Connecticut

“Marketing: prohibited conduct, statements and illustrations; commissioner review of advertisements”

Regulation prohibits marijuana producers from engaging in any advertising if such advertising steers or influences a patient’s selection of a physician, dispensary, or marijuana product.


“Marijuana advertising; requirements for true statements and fair balance”

Regulation requires all advertisements for marijuana that make statements relating to the side effects and effectiveness of marijuana or marijuana products to present information that is true, fair and balanced.


“Marijuana marketing; advertising at a dispensary facility; producer advertising of prices”

Regulation prohibits marijuana producers from advertising marijuana prices, except when making a price list available to a dispensary facility.


“Advertisement" means all representations disseminated in any manner or by any means, other than by labeling, for the purpose of inducing, or which are likely to induce, directly or indirectly, the purchase of marijuana.

The regulation applies to advertisements for marijuana or any product containing marijuana, including raw materials, that requires no further processing and that is packaged for sale to dispensaries, qualifying patients and primary caregivers.


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Delaware

“Prohibitions on online marketing or advertising to a child”

Statute prohibits an operator of an internet website, online or cloud computing service, online application, or mobile application directed to children from marketing or advertising drug paraphernalia, including marijuana paraphernalia.


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District of Columbia

“Prohibited Statements”

Regulation prohibits advertisements that depict or are appealing to children, are false or misleading regarding the price, ingredients, source of, or health benefits of medical marijuana, or that encourage the purchase of medical marijuana without a registration card.


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Florida

Fla. Stat. § 381.986 (6)(h)(2) (2017)
 
 

“Medical marijuana treatment centers”

Statute requires medical marijuana treatment centers that wish to engage in internet advertising and marketing to have all advertisements approved by the Department of Health; prohibits content that specifically targets individuals under the age of 18 including cartoon characters or similar images; prohibits advertisements in the form of unsolicited pop-ups; and requires that opt-in marketing include an easy and permanent opt-out feature.


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Georgia

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Hawaii

“Advertising and displays prohibited”

Rule prohibits a marijuana dispensary licensee from advertising on the internet or on social media, but allows the dispensary licensee to have a website that provides certain general information (e.g., contact information, retail dispensing location, and a list of products).

Rule applies to marijuana or manufactured marijuana products.
Manufactured marijuana products means any capsule, lozenge, oil or oil extract, tincture, ointment or skin lotion, pill, transdermal patch, or pre-filled and sealed container used to aerosolize and deliver marijuana orally, such as an inhaler or nebulizer, that has been manufactured using marijuana, or any other products as specified by the department. Manufactured marijuana products does not include chemically synthesized marijuana or its psychoactive constituents.


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Idaho

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Illinois

Ill. Adm. Code 1290.455
 
 

“Dispensary Advertisements”

Rule prohibits registered dispensing organizations from advertising through any medium within certain physical parameters. The rule excludes noncommercial messages.


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Indiana

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Iowa

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Kansas

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Kentucky

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Louisiana

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Maine

“Classes of licenses; license provisions”

Statute establishes a state licensing authority which may adopt rules regarding marijuana advertising. These rules may include: prohibition on mass-marketing campaigns that have a high likelihood of reaching persons under 21 years of age; a prohibition on health or physical benefit claims in advertising, merchandising and packaging; prohibition on unsolicited advertising on the Internet; prohibition on opt-in marketing that does not permit an easy and permanent opt-out feature; and prohibition on marketing directed toward location-based devices, including but not limited to cell phones, unless the marketing is a mobile device application installed on the device by the device owner who is 21 years old or older, and if the mobile application includes a permanent and easy opt-out feature.


“Unlawful acts and exceptions”

Statute prohibits a person licensed to sell retail marijuana or retail marijuana products from using advertising material that is misleading, deceptive or false, or that is designed to appeal to a person under 21 years of age.


“Advertising”

“Advertising” means the act of providing consideration for the publication, dissemination, solicitation or circulation, visual, oral or written, to induce directly or indirectly any person to patronize a particular retail marijuana establishment or retail marijuana social club or to purchase particular retail marijuana or a retail marijuana product. “Advertising” includes marketing, but does not include package labeling. “Advertising” proposes a commercial transaction or otherwise constitutes commercial speech.


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Maryland

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Massachusetts

“Marketing and Advertising Requirements”

Regulation permits a registered marijuana dispensary to create a logo for use in marketing and advertising, provided that the logo does not contain medical symbols, images of marijuana, paraphernalia, and colloquial references to cannabis and marijuana. Registered marijuana dispensaries may not advertise the price of marijuana, but may, upon request, provide a catalogue or printed list of prices and strains of marijuana that are available. The regulation prohibits advertisements which contain certain types of statements.

The regulation applies to marijuana, marijuana-infused products, and items for sale or promotional gifts, such as T-shirts or novelty items.
A marijuana-infused product means a product infused with marijuana that is intended for use or consumption, including but not limited to edible products, ointments, aerosols, oils, and tinctures.


“Cannabis Advisory Board”

Statute establishes an advisory board to study and make recommendations regulating cannabis advertising.


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Michigan

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Minnesota

“Permitted marketing and advertising activities”

Rule permits the display of a manufacturer’s business name and logo on medical cannabis websites, provided the name or logo does not include images of cannabis or paraphernalia, colloquial references to cannabis, names of cannabis plant strains, or established medical symbols.

Rule requires business websites to contain the following information: medical cannabis manufacturer name; distribution facility location; contact information; distribution facility’s hours of operation; medical cannabis products provided, product pricing; and other information as approved by the commissioner.

Marketing or advertising activities that are not specified in the rule must be approved by the commissioner.

This rule applies to medical cannabis and medical cannabis products such as a device or related supplies and educational materials used in the administration of medical cannabis.


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Mississippi

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Missouri

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Montana

“Advertising prohibited”

Statute prohibits individuals with valid registry identification cards from advertising marijuana or marijuana-related products in any medium, including electronic media.

This applies to marijuana and marijuana-related products. Marijuana-related products may include marijuana-infused products and paraphernalia.


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Nebraska

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Nevada

“Approval required before use of name, logo, sign and advertisement”

Statute requires medical marijuana establishments to use names, logos, and signs or advisements that have been approved by the Division Administrator.


Statute applies to medical marijuana establishments, which include independent testing laboratories, cultivation facilities, facilities for the production of edible marijuana products or marijuana-infused products, or medical marijuana dispensaries.


“Rules governing sale of marijuana products”

Rule prohibits a marijuana establishment from engaging in advertising which contains any statement or illustration that is false or misleading, promotes overconsumption of marijuana or marijuana products, depicts the actual consumption of marijuana or marijuana products, or depicts a child or someone under 21 years of age consuming marijuana or marijuana products or objects suggesting the presence of a child, including, without limitation, toys or characters or cartoons, or contains any other depiction which is designed in any manner to be appealing to or encourage consumption of marijuana or marijuana products by a person who is less than 21 years of age.

Rule prohibits a retail marijuana store or marijuana product manufacturing facility from engaging in advertising that in any way makes marijuana or marijuana products appeal to children, including, without limitation, advertising which uses an image of a cartoon character, mascot, action figure, balloon, fruit or toy. (5)

Rule prohibits advertising in any medium in which 30 percent or more of the audience is reasonably expected to be persons who are less than 21 years of age. (9)

Rule provides that advertisements shall not advertise or offer any marijuana or marijuana product as “free” or “donated” without a purchase. All advertising must contain certain warnings as prescribed by the Department of Taxation, including “Keep out of reach of children”; and “For use only by adults 21 years of age and older.”


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New Hampshire

“Advertising Restrictions”

The regulation permits advertising on websites used for business when the website contains specific information. The regulation permits e-mail communications to existing, qualifying patients and designated caregivers.


“Advertisement” means all representations disseminated in any manner or by any means, other than by labeling, for the purpose of inducing, or which are likely to induce, directly or indirectly, the
purchase of cannabis or cannabis infused products (CIPs).


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New Jersey

“Marketing and advertising”

The regulation prohibits alternative treatment centers (ATC) from advertising the price of marijuana with limited exceptions. The regulation also prohibits ATCs from selling gifts or novelty items with references to marijuana, with limited exceptions for registered qualifying patients or primary caregivers.


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New Mexico

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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New York

“Medical marijuana marketing and advertising by registered organizations”

Rule requires advertisements, regardless of form, to present true and accurate statements about the effectiveness, side effects, consequences, and contraindications of approved medical marijuana product usage. The rule prohibits false or misleading statements, and requires submission of the advertisement for endorsement by the department.

Any advertisement for an approved medical marihuana product shall be submitted to the department at least 30 business days prior to the public dissemination of the advertisement.

Restricts advertising that has the purpose or effect of steering or influencing a patient or caregiver choice with regard to the selection of a practitioner, or approved medical marihuana product.

Rule applies to approved marihuana products.
An approved marihuana product is the final manufactured product delivered to the patient that represents a specific brand with a defined cannabinoid content and active and inactive ingredients, prepared in a specific dosage and form, to be administered as recommended by the practitioner.


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North Carolina

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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North Dakota

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Ohio

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Oklahoma

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Oregon

“Advertising Restrictions”

Rule prohibits advertising that contains false or misleading statements, contain any content that can reasonably be considered to target minors, and contains other content based restrictions. Rule requires all advertisements to contain disclosures about the operation of a vehicle or machinery, and keeping marijuana out of the reach of children.

A registered dispensary or registered processing site may not use the Authority or other state entities’ name or logo except to the extent that information is contained on the proof of registration on any signs at the dispensary, on its website, or in any advertising or social media.


"Advertising" means publicizing the trade name of a person responsible for a marijuana grow site (“PRMG”), registered processing site or dispensary together with words or symbols referring to marijuana or publicizing the brand name of marijuana or a medical cannabinoid product, concentrate or extract in any medium.


Rule applies to marijuana items in any medium. Marijuana items include marijuana, cannabinoid concentrates, cannabinoid extracts, medical cannabinoid products, and immature plants.


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Pennsylvania

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Rhode Island

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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South Carolina

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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South Dakota

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Tennessee

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Texas

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Utah

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Vermont

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Virginia

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Washington

“Advertising”

Statute prohibits all marijuana advertising from including statements that are false or misleading, promote over consumption, represent curative or therapeutic effects, depict an underage child, or are designed to appeal to children. The statute prohibits promotional items such as giveaways, coupons, and distribution of branded or unbranded merchandise. The statute requires all advertising to contain warnings about the effects and health risks associated with marijuana consumption, and limiting use to adults 21 and over.

This statute applies to marijuana, marijuana concentrates, usable marijuana, marijuana-infused products in any form or through any medium. This statute also applies to promotional items such as giveaways, coupons, and distribution of branded or unbranded merchandise.


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West Virginia

No regulation of online advertising for marijuana.

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Wisconsin

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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Wyoming

Marijuana has not been legalized in this jurisdiction.

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