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Zenlock Child-Resistant Packaging

Client: Zenlock

The Zenlock Child-Resistant system is the first all-paper rigid box solution in cannabis packaging.

In response to the 2020 deadline requiring that all cannabis products must be enclosed in child-resistant packaging. Once we understood the legislature, we immersed ourselves in the world of Child-Resistant packaging. We talked to our clients, analyzed samples and familiarized ourselves with testing procedures. The results were clear: too much plastic and too many overly complicated CR mechanisms. Our three design requirements also became clear. We were determined to create packaging using only recyclable materials, we wanted an elevated product presentation, and we needed to build a flexible CR system to accommodate diverse and specific needs for cannabis products.

Currently, most Child-Resistant mechanisms on the market are physically and cognitively difficult to operate. While inhibiting children is the goal, physically challenging packaging can affect broader accessibility. In response, we designed human-centered packaging featuring a mechanism that is sensitive and discrete without being physically taxing. After multiple prototypes with simple 2-part opening sequences, we landed on the final Zenlock system that balances graphics and mechanics to be intuitive for adults yet impenetrable to young hands.

The system is designed for key categories in the cannabis industry and easily expands to new product needs. We strategically placed the mechanism and instructional graphics so that the entire box can be used for branding with high-quality print finishes. The rigid box also provides structure and stability, giving weight to the premium goods inside. And every Zenlock box is constructed using post-consumer recycled paper—the industry’s first sustainable CR rigid box system.


The Dieline Plastic Free Packaging Award, Third Place 2021


Cannabis Packaging Sustainability Design

Design Directory


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