Germany’s medical cannabis program has experienced tremendous growth over the past year or so. In some ways, the German system has been a victim of its own success as patients have experienced shortages and too high of prices. Thankfully, for many patients, their cannabis is covered by their insurance providers, but prices are still too high and there is a lack of a variety of strains to alleviate their particular medical conditions.
Relief was supposed to be on the horizon, with German authorities awarding cultivation licenses to in-country companies for the first time, as the EU power currently imports cannabis from Canada and the Netherlands. More cannabis cultivators will increase supply and improve options as German companies will be in a better position to react to the demands of patients than foreign companies. However, the bidding process for cultivation licenses was declared faulty, setting back the selection process.
Thankfully, the cultivation licensing process will restart soon, as reported by Marguerite Arnold in the Cannabis Industry Journal:
According to documents obtained by Cannabis Industry Journal, the Bundesinstitut für Arzneimittel und Medizinprodukte (or BfArM) issued letters to original bid respondents in the first week of July. The letters appear to have been sent to all parties who originally applied to the first bid – far from the final top runners.
The translation, from German reads:
“We hereby inform you that we have withdrawn the above-mentioned award procedure…and intend to initiate a new award in a timely manner.”
The letter cited the legal decision of March 28 this year by the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court as the reason the agency cannot award the contract. Specifically, because of “necessary changes to the tender documents…inparticular with regard to time, we have decided to cancel the procedure altogether and initiate a new award procedure.”
Per the letter, the new procedure will be published in the Official Journal of the EU. No date was mentioned.
It will be interesting to see how the new cultivation license process plays out. Allowing German companies to provide for their own country’s patients will be a win-win for all involved. Companies will create jobs and generate revenue as patients (and their insurers) will see lower prices and, most importantly, sick and disabled Germans will have the ability to find more strains that will meet their medical needs.
Learn the latest about medical and adult-use programs in the United States and around the world at the next International Cannabis Business Conference in Portland, Oregon, this September 27th-28th. After Portland, the ICBC has already scheduled events for 2019 in San Francisco (February 7th-8th), Barcelona (March 14th), and Berlin (March 31st-April 2nd).