Argentina relies on exports to boost its cannabis industry

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Argentina officially launched a new government agency last Wednesday to boost its medical cannabis and hemp industry.

Known as the Regulatory Agency for the Hemp and Medical Cannabis Industry, ARICCAME represents “the first task force of a new national agency aimed at regulating and promoting the country’s nascent cannabis industry. , which ministers hope will create new jobs and exports generating new revenues for the South American nation”.

“This opens the door for Argentina to start a new path in terms of industrial exports, based on huge global demand,” Argentine Economy Minister Sergio Massa said at an event marking the launch of the new agency.

According to Reuters, “Massa said the agency would begin on Thursday to regularize the programs and coordinate with the various provinces and [le] industrial sector, adding that Argentina already counts on the demand for projects related to the agro-industrial sector. »

On the official ARICCAME website, the agency describes its mission and objectives:

“We are the agency that regulates the import, export, cultivation, industrial production, manufacture, marketing and acquisition, in any capacity, of seeds of the Cannabis plant, cannabis and its derived products for medicinal or industrial purposes”.

The website also lists the agency’s “general objectives”:

  • Establish, through the respective regulations, the regulatory framework for the entire production chain and the national marketing and/or export of the Cannabis Sativa L.
  • Promote a new agro-industrial productive sector for the commercial manufacture of medicines, phytotherapeutic products, food and cosmetics for human use, medicines and food for veterinary use, as well as the different products made possible by industrial hemp
  • Generate the framework for adapting to the regulatory regime, the cultivation and production of cannabis derivatives for existing health use, guaranteeing the traceability and quality of products in order to safeguard the right to health of cannabis users medical
  • Reintroduce hemp in Argentina and all its derivatives: food, construction materials, textile fiber, cellulose and bioplastics with low environmental impact
  • Promote scientific research and sectoral technological progress, fostering favorable conditions for these existing industries in the country

ARICCAME’s specific objectives also include:

  • Establish clear rules that provide legal certainty to the sector and encourage federal participation
  • Articulate through agreements and conventions with other state entities having an intervention in the matter
  • Determine the system of licenses and administrative authorizations for the production chain
  • Generate quality standards that safeguard the right to health of users and consumers of cannabis/hemp products
  • Control non-compliance with the regulatory regime

Argentina legalized cannabis oil for medical use in 2017. Three years later, the country legalized home cultivation of cannabis for the sick.

The launch of the new agency is part of an effort by the Argentine government to continue reforming the medical cannabis program, something the South American country identified as a priority last year.

According to Reuters, the newly launched agency will be headed by Francisco Echarren, who “said the industry could generate thousands of new jobs, as well as technological developments and new products for export. »

“We have a huge challenge ahead,” Echarren said, as quoted by Reuters, “not just building a new industry, but giving millions of Argentines access to products that improve quality of life. . »

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