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Новости/Аналитика

Factors Affecting Canada's Medical Cannabis Market

18.09.2019

Number of medical cannabis sold in Canada by federal license holders for Q2 2019

Accessibility to a wide range of consumers is one of the biggest problems hindering the growth of the medical cannabis sector. The pricing policy for hemp products, according to experts, does not make it accessible to all social layers of the population, even in economically developed countries such as Canada and the United States. 

According to the Canadian Department of Health, medical cannabis sales in the country, after legalization in October 2018, fell by almost 25%. Enterprises operating in this segment of the economy have encountered a number of problems that reduce sales growth. 

Cannabis oil (liters)

In June of this year, holders of federal licenses in Canada sold for further processing about 1,500 kg of dried medical hemp. For comparison, in October 2018, almost 2000 kg of similar products were sold. Sales of hemp oil in June increased, but slightly, to about 4600 liters.

Dried medical hemp (kilograms)

The growth of federal recipients of licenses for activities related to the cultivation and processing of hemp plants also declined this year. And this despite the fact that the last few years there has been only an increase in the registration of new hemp growers. 

In June 2019, about 364,000 active patients who took hemp preparations were registered. This is just a slight improvement over the 345,500 patients registered last October.

Moreover, the number of cannabis shipments monitored by the federal government, which is seen as a key control measure in the medical sector, fell by 17% in June compared to October 2018.

The most negative trend in reducing the consumption of hemp products is observed, as a rule, not in large cities, but on the periphery. For example, in the province of Alberta, the number of registered patients in June 2019 was 94,300, and in October 2018 this figure was 110,200. In this regard, in the above-mentioned administrative-territorial unit of Canada, respectively, there was a decrease in the sale of dried inflorescences and oil for medical purposes - from 416 kg and 953 liters in October 2018, respectively, to 260 kg and 890 liters in June 2019. A similar trend is observed in more southern regions of the country. 

Accessibility to a wide range of consumers is one of the biggest problems hindering the growth of the medical cannabis sector. The pricing policy for hemp products, according to experts, does not make it accessible to all social layers of the population, even in economically developed countries such as Canada and the United States. 

Many manufacturers were forced to restrain price growth at a loss and thereby not “scare” regular customers. The fact is that the excise tax is applied to the base price of the medicine. Then a harmonized sales tax is applied to the amount of this price, which varies from province to province, forcing manufacturers to raise the price of the final product, and medical cannabis patients to pay higher taxes.

"The increase in the excise tax on medical hemp has led to a significant increase in the cost of treating a patient, up to about 30% depending on the province," said Max Monahan-Ellison, the head of a Canadian nonprofit organization formed to protect the rights of patients who use medical hemp and regulate access to hemp therapy. Monahan-Ellison claims that over the past 10 months, the organization has received complaints from many patients who cannot afford to take cannabis medicines. Due to the increase in the price of medical hemp, patients reduce the dose of consumption of necessary drugs, thereby reducing the effectiveness of hemp therapy. 

Quite often, the hemp raw material suppliers themselves also play a negative role in the dynamics of the development of the medical hemp market. Due to the lack of high-quality "green mass" for the manufacture of pharmacological preparations, a sufficient amount of unrealized product has accumulated on the market - dry leaves and inflorescences - up to 50,000 kg, oil - about 10,000 liters. In this regard, questions arise as to whether federal licensed hemp suppliers will increase their stocks of products in anticipation of the launch of Cannabis 2.0 at the end of this year, when it is planned to legalize the sale of food products and extracts. 

The instability of the development of the domestic Canadian market, some experts explain its redistribution. Increasingly, various companies include hemp in various social insurance and medical programs to more effectively treat their employees. 

The hemp heavyweights on the market — Aurora Cannabis and Canopy Growth — together “serve” about 44% of Canada’s 364,000 active patients. But the two companies have completely different strategies for developing their business. 

So, sales of Canopy medical equipment fell to $ 9.8 million in the last quarter, which is $ 8 million less than the same period a year earlier. The patient base in Smiths Falls (Ontario) has declined to 70,900.

On the other hand, Aurora is showing fairly positive growth dynamics. Here, cannabis revenues grew to $ 30 million, and the patient base increased to 89,700 active registered patients. The company is confident that the bet should be made on clinical trials with hemp preparations aimed at treating specific diseases. Today, Aurora has 40 clinical programs that are already completed or are underway, which they plan to continue, expanding their geography not only for Canadian citizens, but also connecting various medical institutions around the world for this.

Обучение в рамках "Конопляного Университета"
13.10.2020

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