Germany is awarding contracts to domestic cannabis growers in an attempt to develop its medical industry and become less reliant on imports.
BfArM – the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices of Germany – announced last Wednesday that it would purchase a total of 7,200 kilograms of cannabis over the next four years from German cultivation subsidiaries of Canadian companies Aurora Cannabis and Aphria.
The decision is subject to a mandatory 10-day waiting period for public contracts, which allows unsuccessful bidders to challenge the decision before the contract is signed. This follows years of red tape that have stalled any plans for domestic cultivation. Even when Germany initially planned to begin production, BfArM but the brakes on it to conduct a study of how other countries have approached the topic of cannabis cultivation.
The first domestically grown harvest is scheduled for late 2020 said BfArM in a statement. They described the endeavor as an important step towards supplying high-quality cannabis for the country’s critically ill patients.
“Aphria is proud to have been selected as a successful applicant in the German tender process, a testament to our high production quality standards,” said Hendrik Knopp, Managing Director of Aphria Germany. “The decision from BfArM is a validation of our strategic approach to supporting the German medical cannabis market, including with high-quality, domestic production to secure vital supply for patients. We are very pleased with our continued business momentum in Germany.”
Medical cannabis was legalized in Germany in 2017, but the country has depended exclusively on imports, primarily from Canada and the Netherlands. They’ve been seeking to change that for the estimated 40,000 patients in Germany.
There will be no new obstacles or regulations placed on imports, even when domestic cannabis farming is established. That way, Germany can benefit from both imported products and locally grown cannabis.