With New Zealand just weeks away from passing its medicinal cannabis legislation two British companies are poised to enter the market.
Nelson-based business, Medical Kiwi, has signed exclusive deals with U.K. firms Liberty Herbal Technologies and Vitality CBD. On December 18, the New Zealand government is expected to ratify proposals which will enact its medical cannabis programme in the first quarter of 2020.
The legislation is expected to lead to the creation of the Medicinal Cannabis Agency, which will manage the programme and has powers over cultivation licenses.
Paul Manning, co-founder of Auckland-based Helius Therapeutics told Marijuana Business Daily that the regulations ‘could allow New Zealand to establish itself as a world-class hub for medical cannabis innovation and production in the APAC (Asia-Pacific) region’.
Aldo Miccio, Medical Kiwi board chair and former mayor of Nelson, said the steps it is undertaking with U.K. suppliers are to secure a firm launch pad for the company into 2020.
Vitality CBD is one of the U.K.’s leading CBD brands with a full range of products including including sprays, drops, skin cream, balms, and e-liquids.
‘Heat Not Burn’
Its range is currently sold across the U.K. including supermarket giant Tesco, pharmacy chain Boots and other health stores. The partnership with Liberty Herbal Technologies will allow medical cannabis users access to its non-combustion Hapac inhaler.
Liberty is a subsidiary of U.K. stock market company Ananda Developments. The Hapac uses a ‘heat, not burn technology ‘ and uses measured doses of medicinal cannabis in small packages.
Mr Miccio is also involved in establishing one of New Zealand’s first medicinal cannabis cultivation companies in Brightwater. He said the agreements represented significant steps towards the company’s goal of providing New Zealanders with access to safe, effective medicinal cannabis products as soon as we can’.
In May 2019, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the country would be holding a referendum on the legalisation of cannabis next year.
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