Medical Marijuana Track and Trace Pilot

Beginning August 1 and concluding in November, the County of Humboldt will operate the Humboldt Cannabis Pilot Program. The program is designed to track the movement of medical cannabis through each step of the supply chain, as well as trace the product back to its origin, a technology known as “track and trace.”


The Humboldt Cannabis Pilot Program is designed to ensure medical cannabis in Humboldt County complies with local and state regulations, and promotes public health and safety. The program will also help protect the Humboldt artisanal brand of medicinal cannabis, as required by the county’s Medical Marijuana Land Use Ordinance.

A local track and trace program is critical to demonstrate that the county’s medical cannabis regulatory program incorporates enforcement principles important to local and federal law enforcement including preventing distribution of cannabis to minors, preventing the diversion of cannabis to other states, preventing cannabis revenue from supporting criminal enterprises and preventing the growing of cannabis on public lands.

How it works

The track and trace solution uses secure stamps combined with software and information-based security. The secure stamps are a proven method of providing track and trace functionality, fighting counterfeiting, and allowing for data collection and business intelligence.

After a cultivator harvests and packages their crop, they apply a traceable, counterfeit-resistant stamp to the packaging. The stamp includes a QR code and unique stamp number that is coded with information about the product, including size, strain, grower and more. As the package goes through the supply chain—from cultivator to manufacturer to distributor to dispensary—the stamps are scanned by each licensee so they can be tracked until the product is sold to a patient. 

Patients can use the stamps in conjunction with a free smartphone app, which will be released when the program launches, or website to make sure a product is authentic, retrieve product and provenance information, see test results and more (for example, were any pesticides used, is the grower Clean Green or organic, and so on).


The Humboldt County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office is developing the project in partnership with SICPA Product Security, LLC, a global leader in product authentication, identification and secure traceability solutions and services.

In order to ensure the program suits the unique needs of all involved in the local medical marijuana industry, the pilot includes a sample selection of different stakeholders, including cultivators, manufacturers, distributors and dispensaries. Patients can also engage with the pilot by authenticating the products they purchase through the pilot app and website.