In February, the cannabis industry recorded a major milestone when Australia became the first continent to legalize medical marijuana.

The legislation amended the Narcotic Drugs Act and allows for the cultivation of marijuana for medical and scientific purposes. Following the passing of this legislation, Australian Health Minister Sussan Ley made the following statement:

“This is an historic day for Australia and the many advocates who have fought long and hard to challenge the stigma around medicinal cannabis products so genuine patients are no longer treated as criminals. This is the missing piece in a patient’s treatment journey and will now see seamless access to locally-produced medicinal cannabis products from farm to pharmacy.”

iCAN Australia is Born

Australia represents a new opportunity for cannabis companies and yesterday, iCAN: Israel-Cannabis entered the market by forming a joint venture with LeafCann Research and Advisory. The partnership, iCAN: Australia will collaborate on a range of initiatives including medical cannabis research, innovation, acceleration, and education.

iCAN: Israel-Cannabis CEO Saul Kaye stated, “We are thrilled to partner with LeafCann to form iCAN: Australia. Our collaboration will bring world-class cannabis products to the Australian market as well as accelerate our collaborative research and development of new products for a range of indications.”

LeafCann’s practitioner education program will be incorporated into iCAN’s product offerings and distributed by iCAN. iCAN: Australia will take a significant interest in CannaTech Australia, a medical cannabis summit modeled after CannaTech’s events in Israel.

Canadian Titans Have the Early Mover Advantage

Although iCAN is not the first company to target the Australian cannabis market, it has taken a different approach when compared to the other companies that have entered the market.

Earlier this year, Cann Group announced that Aurora Cannabis (ACB.V) (ACBFF), a licensed medical cannabis producer in Canada, acquired 19.9% of the company ahead of its initial public offering.

Canopy Growth (WEED.TO) (TWMJF), the largest licensed medical cannabis producer in the world also entered the Australian medical cannabis industry through a partnership with AussCann (ACNNF). Canopy Growth will help AussCann increase market share and capitalize on the Australian cannabis market.

Global Expansion Continues

Marijuana legalization may not be a top priority for the United States right now, but change is occurring all over the world. The global marijuana industry has gathered support from many high-ranking officials over the last two years which has increased overall support for the reform of restrictive laws.

Progress toward this goal is hampered by political realities, such that cannabis is still classified as a Schedule I substance. It is time for change and for the authorities to recognize its medical benefits and to remove some of the restrictions that are not supported by scientific research.

Not only is this a medical necessity, but it just makes good business sense.

Authored By: Jason Spatafora

MAPH Enterprises, LLC | (305) 414-0128 | 1501 Venera Ave, Coral Gables, FL 33146 |
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