European cannabis news
European cannabis news

Europe Cannabis News - Why Europe is a Pot of Gold

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DanaSmith on Wednesday Nov 21, 2018

Europe Cannabis News - Why Europe is a Pot of Gold


Greece Grants First 2 Cannabis Licenses


On Monday this week, Greece saw a milestone move for the local cannabis industry with the first license being granted to a private cannabis producer, as part of the country’s efforts to boost the economy through the cannabis trade.


In 2017, Greece legalized cannabis for medical purposes and just this March allowed the cultivation and production of the plant. Not one, but two licenses were granted this week, to two companies named Biomecann and Bioprocann. Another 12 licenses are expected to be issued before the year ends, according to the Economy and Development Ministry.


“There is huge interest, mainly from Canada and Israel… some of them (potential investors) are huge,” says Stergios Pitsiorlas, Greece’s deputy economy minister. However, he clarified during a conference that they are by no means considering legalizing cannabis for recreational purposes.


Pitsiorlas explained that the first MMJ products are expected to be available in around 12-18 months, and that the industry is primarily focused on exports. While Greek authorities don’t have enough data on the the number of cannabis users in the country, it’s believed that thousands of patients are now using cannabis to treat several serious medical conditions. Based on the Greek medical cannabis system, patients will need prescriptions from chemists in order to obtain their cannabis. Health Minister Andreas Xanthos also says that the state health insurance programmes will not be subsidizing cannabis medicines.

Greece’s first cannabis grow houses will be located at Larisa and Corinth. These 14 licenses are seen to contribute over 750 new jobs and inject some $212.05 million in investments. All licenses last 5 years and will be revised each year.


“Our message is that the country is open for investments,” says deputy minister of agriculture Vassilis Kokkalis. “It’s a greenhouse cultivation expected to create many jobs,” Kokkalis said.


Additionally, the Greek government authorized the importation of many products derived from medical cannabis last year, including hemp cultivation for industrial use such as food, textiles, paper, and other materials.



Europe Is A Pot Of Gold For Canadian Cannabis Companies


The recently-released 3rd edition of the European Cannabis Report forecasts that the market is worth a hot $130.33 billion in 2028, which clearly eclipses that of the US which is seen to generate only $75 billion in 2030, based on a report by Cowan.


These figures are causing Canadian businesses to sit up and pay attention.


“Europe is undergoing a fast-paced wave of regulatory and legislative changes. A legal version of Moore’s law is at play, i.e., the number of countries that have legalized medical cannabis programs is doubling every two years,” write the authors of the European Cannabis Report. So it’s no surprise that Canadian cannabis producers are trying to get a piece of the pot pie in Europe.


Aurora Cannabis, for one, already has presence in 10 countries beyond Canada. These include Denmark, Italy, Germany, Poland, and Malta, as well as Australia, Colombia, the Cayman Islands, Brazil, and South Africa. Aurora says that they have created a “pan-European” company last August, one that’s been tasked with managing the various divisions throughout the continent. Aurora’s Nordic 1 facility located in Denmark will be harvesting their first crops this fall as they continue building the nearby Aurora Nordic 2, which is expected to be completed come 2020. “The EU I think it’s going to be a very, very rich market for us,” says Aurora chief corporate officer, Cam Battley.


‘We’re going to be able to move more products we believe in Denmark than we’re able to move in Canada,” Aurora chief executive officer Terry Booth adds.

Meanwhile, Cronos Group is working on expanding worldwide via joint ventures. Cronos already has presence on 5 continents including Germany; they also have plans on expanding to Poland and Australia.


“We see Germany as extremely important for our global reach and plan to continue to grow and open this channel through our Peace Naturals branded medical products,” says Cronos CEO Michael Gorenstein. “The growth opportunities for Cronos are vast, and extend across the globe as markets open.”


According to Tilray CEO Brendan Kennedy, they can now import and distribute products in Latin America but will use their Portugal branch as a base for expanding in the EU. “Tilray Portugal will focus on supplying the global medical market, primarily in the EU. Tilray Germany and Tilray Australia and New Zealand are similar in that they focus on importing products and on sales and marketing,” he told analysts.


Canopy Growth has also secured contracts for exporting cannabis to EU nations including Spain, Germany, and Denmark as well as Brazil and Australia.


“I think Europe is actually the most, or almost the most, exciting activity going on. So we’ve been busy in Germany,” CEO Bruce Linton says. “I think we’ve had about 1,000 pharmacies in Germany move our product and we’re now in the process of seeking approval for upgraded formats of the product. We have plants in the ground in a couple of countries in Europe already in greenhouses.”


Europe Cannabis News - Why Europe is a Pot of Green Gold from CannabisNet on Vimeo.








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