World class medical cannabis legislation a win for patients and producers

Hikurangi Cannabis Company is celebrating the progress of world-leading medicinal cannabis legislation by the Government of New Zealand today.

In a speech during the second reading of the Misuse of Drugs (Medicinal Cannabis) Bill this afternoon, Health Minister David Clark confirmed that the coalition Government parties have agreed that:

  • regulations for the new legislation will be set next year;
  • people with palliative conditions will not be prosecuted if found with cannabis plants;
  • an amnesty will allow local plant genetics to come into the legal industry;
  • CBD products will now be defined by THC levels rather than CBD levels;
  • cannabis convictions will not necessarily exclude individuals from working in the industry.

Hikurangi CEO Manu Caddie says the revised bill and timeframes are very exciting and will be good for patients and the fledgling industry.

“The medicinal cannabis scheme to be established will probably not prescribe the health conditions that cannabis can be used for” said Mr Caddie. “While there is a stop-gap provision for tens of thousands of people with palliation, the Government has acknowledged that medical professionals are competent to decide what treatment they believe may be helpful with their patients.”

Mr Caddie said his company was particularly excited about the opportunity for local breeders who have grown for the illicit market will now be able to bring their expertise into the legal industry.

“We are also really pleased that CBD products definition is more common-sense, it means the plants we have been growing can be made available as whole plant medicines.”

“This is world-leading legislation by a Government that seems committed to setting up a regulatory regime that will be the envy of medical cannabis consumers and producers everywhere. We have seen how Australia, Europe and even Canada haven’t got their policy settings right. While New Zealand is starting behind others, we have the opportunity to learn from them about what we should and should not include in our regulations.”

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