A FIRST for the UK this week with the announcement that the National Health Service is to conduct its first major study into the potential benefits of cannabis for pain relief.
Some 5,000 adults will take vaporised, whole-plant cannabis extracts daily for at least a year, reports The Times.
To be known as the Canpain trial the results will be assessed by the the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) to determine if cannabis should be approved as an NHS treatment for up to 15m adults.
Tony Samios, from the private firm LVL Health, which is running the trial, said that if all goes to plan cannabis will be rolled out on the NHS for chronic pain ‘within the next few years’.
He told The Times: “We’re hoping we will provide the data that NICE and the NHS require to get it prescribed… absolutely millions could benefit.” BusinessCann will be reporting further on this groundbreaking development next week.
UK state broadcaster Channel 4 has taken a leading stake in a £10m funding round by CBD company Cannaray.
Scott Maguire, Cannaray’s chief executive, said it was planning to use the cash to fund its European expansion.
Investors also included Three Bridges Private Capital, Alpha Blue Ocean and a mix of new and follow-on private investors.
Channel 4, which is set to be privatised by the UK Government, set up its venture capital arm in 2015 to tap new revenue streams.
Vinay Solanki, head of Channel 4 Ventures, said his mission was to back ‘bold and disruptive categories’, adding that the European landscape for medical cannabis and CBD was ‘expanding rapidly’.
The two parties would not disclose the size of the deal, in which Channel 4 Ventures obtains equity in Cannaray in exchange for advertising inventory on Channel 4, rather than cash.
Scott Maguire, Cannaray’s chief executive, said the company was planning to use its newly acquired funds to expand its European medical cannabis business, primarily in Germany.
Mr Maguire said the deal is a sign that unease around cannabis was subsiding. “The stigma is being washed away every year. Last week, the UK became the first country in the world to regulate the sale of CBD products by requiring vendors to receive approval from the Food Standards Agency.”
The company began advertising its CBD products in the UK last year, when it hired TV personality Claudia Winkleman to become a Cannaray ambassador.
Philip Morris, the company behind Marlboro cigarettes, is plotting a major push into the cannabis sector with the UK inhaler firm it bought for £1.2bn last year.
The world’s biggest tobacco seller wants to develop ‘cannabinoid products that help people take wellbeing into their own hands’ following its purchase of Vectura, a UK pharmaceutical business that makes drugs to combat diseases caused by smoking for the NHS, reports the Telegraph.
The pair, along with Danish company Fertin Pharma, also want to roll out medical cannabis to treat heart attacks and chronic pain.
In August last year Philip Morris International – a separate firm to the US division – said it was now looking to a future beyond cigarettes.
In an interview with The Mail on Sunday its CEO Jacek Olczak said its iconic Marlboro brand ‘will disappear’, from the UK market.
Swiss CBD Threat
He added: “The first choice for consumers is they should quit smoking. But if they don’t, the second best choice is to let them switch to the better alternatives.”
Concerns have emerged over the future of the Swiss CBD industry after the Swiss Confederation said it wanted to see a ‘denaturing product at an appropriate concentration’ added to CBD oils to ‘discourage excessive oral ingestion’.
Simon Anderfurhen, an independent Swiss researcher specialising in drug regulation told Newsweed: “Switzerland is not going to ban these products directly, but will make them impossible to consume…the federal government will authorise the consumption of CBD oil in a therapeutic, medicinal setting.”
He believes that a result of excessive marketing claims of health benefits by the industry and a recent survey on the misleading labelling of products means the Government now wants to regulate the industry in a ‘pharmaceutical’ way.
The Dutch adult-use cannabis cultivation trail has been delayed until the second quarter of 2023 – almost three after its first proposed launch.
Ministers Ernst Kuipers of Public Health and Dilan Yeşilgöz-Zegerius of Justice and Security said in a letter to parliament that this is taking longer than expected to get to the point ‘when the quantity, quality, and diversity of the legally grown cannabis is sufficient to supply the participating coffeeshops with enough stocks’.
After the initial delay the second half of 2022 had been highlighted as the likely start date but only eight of 10 cultivators are currently approved. The trial is set to last four years.
UK Crown Dependency the Isle of Man is set to open its first medical cannabis pharmacy.
The Manx government is asking for bids from pharmacies to run a trial service for 12 months. Medicinal cannabis currently not available on the Manx NHS and no GPs are registered to prescribe it.
A public consultation in 2019 found 55% of participants supported buying medicinal cannabis over the counter at pharmacies, reports the BBC.
The post European Round-Up: 5,000 UK Patients To Receive Cannabis In Ground-Breaking Trial, TV Station Invests In Cannabis, Tobacco Firm’s Cannabis Ambition, Swiss CBD Setback appeared first on Cannabis Business Executive – Cannabis and Marijuana industry news.