The medical cannabis business sector in the United Kingdom is a rapidly growing industry that has the potential to provide both economic benefits to the country and health benefits to patients in need. Since the legalization of medical cannabis in 2018, the UK has become a hub for cannabis importation, paving the way for innovative medical treatments and therapies.
Current status of the Medical Cannabis in the United Kingdom allows authorized dispensaries to sell medical cannabis to patients. These dispensaries or Clinics for example are governed by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and are subject to stringent guidelines regarding safety and precautions. Private clinics frequently ask to see a GP notes before allowing a potential patient make an appointment with one of the doctors they work with. This enables the clinic to determine whether they are likely to be granted a cannabis prescription. Before they arrange a potentially expensive appointment with one of their physicians.
Patients today have access to a variety of amenities. If a person is not physically fit, they can speak with an expert or doctor by video call and describe their situation. If the expert decides that a CBPM is the best course of treatment for you. They will go over the variety of products that may be ideal for you. They will frequently then direct you to a drugstore that has a relationship with the expert.
Good place to see more information on recent UK’s medical cannabis requirements is on this FAQ page.
The medical cannabis industry in the UK is projected to be worth up to £2 billion by 2024. With an estimated 1.4 million patients eligible for treatment. As the industry grows, it has the potential to create new jobs, generate tax revenue, and stimulate economic growth.
In addition to these economic benefits, the medical cannabis industry can attract significant foreign investment. In 2019, the Canadian company Aurora Cannabis invested £15 million in a UK-based facility. Signaling confidence in the future of the industry and starting to import bulk cannabis to the UK.
Medical cannabis has been shown to be effective in treating a range of medical conditions. From chronic pain and multiple sclerosis to epilepsy and cancer-related symptoms. The use of medical cannabis can improve patients’ quality of life, reduce their reliance on prescription medications, and provide relief from symptoms that have been difficult to manage with traditional treatments.
One notable example of the health benefits of medical cannabis is the treatment of epilepsy. In 2018, the UK government approved the use of medical cannabis to treat certain types of epilepsy in children. This decision followed the high-profile case of 12-year-old Billy Caldwell. Who suffered from severe epilepsy and experienced a reduction in seizures after receiving medical cannabis treatment.
Another example is the use of medical cannabis to treat cancer-related symptoms. In a recent study, cancer patients receiving medical cannabis reported a significant reduction. in pain and an improvement in their overall quality of life.
As mentioned in the United Kingdom medical cannabis is legal and can be prescribed by a doctor for specific medical conditions. While the specific cannabis strains used for medical purposes in the UK may vary, some strains are more commonly used for their therapeutic properties. These strains often have higher levels of CBD, the non-psychoactive compound in cannabis, and lower levels of THC, the psychoactive compound.
Some popular medical cannabis strains include ACDC, Harlequin, and Charlotte’s Web, which are known for their anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety, and pain-relieving effects. Other strains such as Sour Diesel and Wedding Cake may also be used for medical purposes, as they are known for their calming and mood-enhancing effects. And are consider one of the best weed strains in the UK. It’s important to discuss the use of medical cannabis with a doctor and to obtain it from a reputable source.
As of 2023, importing cannabis products into the UK for medicinal purposes is legal, but heavily regulated. Companies must adhere to strict regulations and obtain a range of licenses and certifications before they can legally import and distribute cannabis products in the country.
As reported already also by Prohibition Partners, one of the major challenges facing companies looking to import bulk cannabis products into the UK is obtaining a Home Office license. This license is required to import controlled substances into the country. And the application process can take several months. The Home Office reviews each application on a case-by-case basis and requires a detailed plan for importing and distributing cannabis products.
Despite the regulatory hurdles, there are companies successfully importing cannabis products into the UK for medical use. For example, in 2020, a UK-based company imported the first bulk shipment of medical cannabis into the country from the Netherlands. The shipment was intended for distribution to patients with conditions such as epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. Since, UK’s import market was opened and Canadian, Israeli and African companies had exported medical cannabis products into UK successfully.
A Good Manufacturing Practice (“GMP”) certificate is required in accordance with the rules governing medicinal products in the European Union (“EU”) and to be able to import bulk cannabis to the UK also. The EU GMP certification is acknowledged by the MHRA.
EU-GMP standards for pharmaceuticals are among the most rigorous in the world, demanding the highest levels of quality assurance and product consistency. Usually following a pre-audit review by a local compliance Auditor. A comprehensive inspection is conducted over a 4-day period by government officials from the responsible agency on-site.
Medical Cannabis like other medicines must have a clearly defined composition. This means the cannabinoid and terpene content is consistent from one batch to another.
Such consistency is important for:
As the medical cannabis industry continues to grow, more businesses are considering importing medical cannabis to the UK for distribution to patients in need. However, navigating the legal and regulatory landscape can be challenging. In the following part, we’ll provide a step-by-step guide to obtaining the necessary import licenses. Meeting UK health regulations when distributing medical cannabis products.
The first step to importing medical cannabis to the UK is to obtain a Home Office license. The license application process can take several months and requires a detailed plan for importing and distributing medical cannabis products. It’s important to work with experienced legal and regulatory advisors to ensure that your application is comprehensive and meets all the necessary requirements.
To distribute medical cannabis products in the UK, you must obtain a Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certification. This certification ensures that the products are manufactured to the highest quality standards and meet all regulatory requirements. To obtain GMP certification, you will need to work with a licensed manufacturer like WeGROW who has been certified by a regulatory agency.
A Qualified Person (QP) is responsible for certifying that medical cannabis products meet all regulatory requirements before they are distributed. You will need to work with a QP to ensure that your products meet UK health regulations and are safe for patients to use. You can learn more about QP role here.
To distribute medical cannabis products in the UK, you must obtain a Marketing Authorization (MA) from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). The MA application process can take several months and requires detailed information about the medical cannabis products you plan to distribute, including their intended use and potential side effects.
Once you have obtained all the necessary licenses and certifications, you can begin establishing a distribution network. It’s important to work with experienced pharmaceutical distributors who are familiar with the regulations and requirements for distributing medical cannabis products in the UK. A good place to start can be here.
When distributing medical cannabis products in the UK, it’s important to ensure compliance with all UK health regulations. You can read it in details but in bottom line, this includes following strict packaging and labeling requirements. Monitoring the safety and quality of your products, And reporting any adverse reactions to the relevant authorities.
Pricing: Medical cannabis is still far too unaccessible and expensive, especially for out-of-pocket patients. Yet high quality cannabis can be grown very cheaply in many parts of the world like in Africa. We are bringing it to the UK. We guarantee highest quality through our production process and pass on the price advantages to patients through low production costs and high volumes.
Branding: WeGROW operates as a trusted long-term production partner offering white or private label services for the importer to build their brand in the markets they operate.
Market Fit: WeGROW fullfils the strict UK and European quality standards for medicinal cannabis. As a result, patients receive cannabis flowers as high-quality medicinal products that meet all regulatory requirements according to the EU-GMP standard.
Logistics: Sending cannabis around the world is not that easy. In close coordination with WeGROW’s processing partners, they coordinate the obtaining of import and export permits and advise them on all issues that may arise – from the correct transport packaging to the choice of the logistics company. Once arrived in the UK, the cannabis gets prepared for production into a medicinal product in a highly secured and climatically standardised storage facilities.
Processing: The essential manufacturing steps for cannabis medicinal products take place in an EU GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) certified production facility in Germany. Every single flower is processed and inspected. We do not use ionising radiation at all, which helps to protect the terpenes and active substances in the plant.
Quality: Protocols of controls and laboratory analyses at various points along the production process ensure the reliable pharmaceutical quality of the end product. Patients can thus concentrate fully on their therapy and do not have to worry about the quality of the medicines.
‘WeGROW’ has both its cultivation and processing facilities based 1,600 meters above sea-level in the mountains of Lesotho, where clean air and peaceful environment ensure the growth of high quality cannabis plants according to strict EU-GMP Principles for cultivation, extraction and the processing of cannabis for the medicinal and pharmaceutical markets by exporting medical cannabis to Germany and other global cannabis markets.
The 60,000 square meter cannabis facility in Lesotho has 30,000 square meter of production space in a unique hybrid greenhouse environment and employs >100 members of the surrounding communities.
The greenhouse is built to harness the power of the sun and improve the quality of the cannabis flower. The unique greenhouse design utilizes the power of the sun to increase terpenes and resin development throughout the life cycle of the plant. This unique growing technique, paired with innovative processing techniques, allows for a finely cured and crafted product that consumer across Europe enjoy.
WeGROW’s products are reliable because each variety contains a consistent amount of cannabinoids and terpenes. They are also free of contaminants such as microbes, pesticides and heavy metals. These qualities make WeGROW cannabis products reliable and safe for patients, while ensuring distributors a safe route to import cannabis from Africa.
WeGROW is producing at highest quality in a facility that sets the gold standard for the cannabis industry. Our greenhouses are powered by sunlight to provide optimal growing conditions.
Compassionate pricing is a game-changer that not only subscribes to our values of accessibility for all, but makes us highly competitive as a supplier to international markets.
As the leading exporter of Cannabis products out of Lesotho we have developed a unique genetic portfolio of 13 stable high demanded medical grade strains backed with years of successful reputation import bulk medical cannabis to Europe. These strains are highly THC concentrated and specially adopted for chronicle pain syndromes.
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Medical cannabis refers to cannabis or marijuana that is used for medical purposes, typically to relieve symptoms of certain medical conditions. The import of medical cannabis to the UK is necessary because not all domestic production capabilities are in place yet. Importing medical cannabis allows patients in the UK to access medical cannabis products that they would not otherwise be able to obtain and diversifying their options.
Yes, it is possible to import medicinal cannabis into the UK for personal use if you have a prescription from a registered medical practitioner. However, the process can be complicated, and it is important to ensure that the product you are importing is legal in the UK and meets the required standards.
For example, a patient with multiple sclerosis in the UK might need to import Sativex, a cannabis-based medicine that is not currently available on the National Health Service (NHS). To do so, they would need to obtain a prescription from their doctor and apply for an import license from the Home Office.
In addition to a valid prescription, you will need to provide evidence that the product you are importing is legal and meets UK standards. This may include a certificate of analysis from the manufacturer or evidence of compliance with Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards.
For example, if a patient in the UK needs to import a cannabis-based medicine from Canada, they would need to provide documentation demonstrating that the product was legally produced and meets GMP standards.
No, not all countries allow the export of medicinal cannabis products, and those that do may have different regulatory requirements. Additionally, certain countries may be subject to trade sanctions or other restrictions that prohibit the importation of their products.
For example, patients in the UK may be able to import medicinal cannabis products from countries such as Lesotho, the Netherlands, or Israel, but may face difficulties importing products from countries such as the United States or China.