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Dr. Constantin von der Groeben, Demecan:

"The future of medical cannabis in Germany is secure"

Demecan welcomes the Federal Council's positive vote on the Cannabis Act (CanG) on March 22, 2024. The law contains urgently needed reforms for medical cannabis. From now on, cannabis will no longer be a narcotic, which will simplify medical prescribing and improve access for the approximately 200,000 cannabis patients in Germany. CanG also puts an end to the structural disadvantage German manufacturers had compared to imports from abroad and thus enables fair competition.

"It's finally done! Despite all the euphoria surrounding legalization, it is, above all, a good day for medicinal cannabis. From April 1, patients will be able to obtain cannabis much faster and without the bureaucracy of narcotics," says Dr. Constantin von der Groeben, one of the managing directors of Demecan. "The discrimination against German manufacturers compared to cannabis imports is also over. We can now ramp up domestic production in Saxony and supply patients directly with the best medical cannabis 'Made in Germany.'" Co-managing Director Dr. Philipp Goebel explains: "We are now going to work on ensuring that 90% of medical cannabis comes from Germany and only 10 percent is imported. Not the other way around, as was previously the case."

Medical cannabis has been legal in Germany since 2017. The law now transfers the corresponding regulations from the Narcotics Act (BtMG) into the newly created Medical Cannabis Act (CanG). This means that doctors can prescribe cannabis more easily and face fewer bureaucratic hurdles. Until now, the cultivation of cannabis in Germany has been regulated by a licensing procedure. The Federal Office for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM) determines the quantity produced and the selling price by tender. Imports, on the other hand, are not subject to any quantity or price restrictions. As a result, it is significantly more attractive to trade medical cannabis from abroad than to produce it in Germany. In 2023 alone, this resulted in more than 25 tons of imports compared to domestic production of just 2.6 tons. CanG puts an end to this disadvantage and replaces the previous licensing procedure with a system of granting permits. From now on, the same conditions will apply to imports and production in Germany.

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