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However, there is hope, with the government now taking a bite out of the global Cannabis/Hemp industry. This new and prospective sector stands to better the lives of thousands while dramatically contributing to the country’s battered economy.
During a media briefing on 6 March 2022, KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala affirmed this point. He explained that the potential for the Cannabis/Hemp industry is estimated at over R28 billion in South Africa. He further highlighted that it has the potential to create between 10 000 to 20 000 job opportunities across the entire value chain.
“Therefore, the establishment of the Cannabis industry will lead to the diversification of the economy, create jobs, increase economic growth, and contribute to poverty alleviation. The Provincial Cannabis Committee will be responsible for growing the cannabis/hemp industry through ensuring adherence to regulatory systems, seed supply systems, research and technology development.”
The Provincial Cannabis Committee will also drive the following:
- Sustainable producer systems
- Market and supplier development systems
- Manufacturing and product development
- Education and training
- Communication and awareness
What adds even further promise to the Cannabis industry in SA is that the country’s climate is favourable to cannabis cultivation. This means that Cannabis or Hemp farms can be established virtually anywhere throughout South Africa.
So how do you register to take advantage of the Cannabis industry in South Africa?
The first step in ensuring that you are eligible to participate in this sector is to take the appropriate steps to get registered.
- Click the link to visit the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development website.
- Go to the Plant Production section (click here).
- You can choose five different application options. These include the following:
- Application form for hemp permit,
- Import of hemp varieties application form.
- Application authorisation for locally bred unlisted hemp varieties.
- Transport declaration for hemp.
- Notification of planting hemp.
- Download these documents, print the application forms, and fill them out.
- The necessary email and postal addresses are provided in the documents. This ensures forms are sent directly to the correct government official.
How to apply for a cannabis licence to cultivate, manufacture or import cannabis products for medicinal purposes?
When looking at obtaining a cannabis licence for medicinal purposes, South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) warns, “The process to obtain a licence from SAHPRA to cultivate cannabis for medical research purposes is a rigorous one. There needs to be standardisation of the cannabis cultivars and assurance that crops can be grown in conditions of strict security.”
According to the South African health body, the cultivation of cannabis for medicinal research purposes has to be strictly controlled as South Africa is a signatory to the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB).
“For this reason, SAHPRA has to date issued five positive recommendations granting permits, out of approximately one hundred applications that have or are being considered,” SAHPRA said.
How to register for a medical cannabis license in South Africa:
- Visit SAHPRA’s website and download the 17-page application by clicking here.
- Please note that the application form takes an in-depth look at your cannabis products, from growth to testing the said medicinal products.
- Once your Medical Cannabis application form is completed, email it to firstname.lastname@example.org
Be sure to get involved in South Africa’s new green industry.
What are your thoughts on the matter? Will you be getting involved?
Share your views in the comment section below.