UGANDA has secured contracts to export medical marijuana products to Canada and Germany worth more than $139 million in June. South Africa is also one of the markets for unrefined cannabis buds/flower.
Since December 2017, Kampala has exported the product to South Africa’s National Analytical Forensic Services in Pretoria. An order to Uganda’s Industrial Hemp Ltd, a private company, was valued at $10,000, the local Daily Monitor newspaper reported on Tuesday.
The marijuana exports from a farm in Kasese District include Cannabinol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) with a mixture of 2.7mg THC and 2.5mg CBD for Sativex drugs approved in the USA, Europe and Canada.
Oil Risin contains Dronabinol for making Marinol and syndros capsules and CBD-enriched creams for various skin disorders.
Orders for Ugandan medical cannabis have been received from at least 20,000 pharmacies in Canada and Germany, according to Benjamin Cadet, one of the directors at Industrial Hemp, jointly working with an Israel company Together Pharma Ltd.
‘People are using morphine, the main component of opium as an analgesic for cancer pain. Opium is an Opioid and more addictive and with side effects, yet Cannabinol (CBD) from medical marijuana is the best option for such patients,’ said Cadet.
WebMD, a global website that provides health information, states that the greatest amount of evidence for the therapeutic effects of cannabis relate to its ability to reduce chronic pain, nausea and vomiting due to chemotherapy and tight or stiff muscles.
But the benefits of medical marijuana will not be available to Ugandans – yet.
‘Cancer patients are using CBD illegally. We have the scientists and the technology to do this but regulations are not in place to allow cannabis drugs manufactured for domestic consumption,’ added Cadet.
First Lady Janet Museveni has labelled cannabis ‘satanic’. But the issue is due to be debated with other cabinet ministers recognising the health benefits.