Cannabis fever hits Cape Town

South Africa would be fertile ground to establish a thriving cannabis industry, a gathering in Green Point heard last week. The two-day CannaTech 2019 summit, the first of its kind to be held in Africa, brought together hundreds of people, including businesspeople, pharmacist and scientists from around the world.

Speakers said Cape Town has shown a huge interest since the use of cannabis for medicinal reasons was legalised.

The country also has sufficient land to grow the plant.

Established cannabis growers and budding entrepreneurs said they would like to share information on the business side of growing cannabis.

The talk also focused on getting an operational license, knowledge of cannabis growing, its uses and value in the market.

Saul Kaye, CannaTech chief executive officer, said the industry needs buy-in from government to lessen fears about working with cannabis and eliminate the black market stigma.

James Scott-Wong, managing partner at AlmaStone, added that: “As this industry is in its infancy and many are seeking direction, we can take a proactive stance, define the market standards and practices, and establish the competitive landscape.”

He further said this could be achieved through collaborations.

“We can stack culture, expertise, resources and skill-sets to better execute on an action plan to realise a stable supply chain,” said Scott-Wong.

Matthew Anderson, chief executive officer at Vanguard Scientific, said the cannabis industry also needs quality management with clear guidelines on compliance.

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