UK Government Fund Invests In Cannabis Company
During the pandemic, the United Kingdom set up a fund called the ‘British Business Bank’s Future Fund.’ The aim of the taxpayer-backed fund was to ‘support innovative companies that might have struggled to secure money during the pandemic.’
The fund recently announced another round of applicant approvals, and among the winners of the government investments was a cannabis company that specializes in making hemp-derived oil. Per excerpts from The Guardian:
The UK government has become a shareholder in a cannabis oil company, a yoghurt bar business, a London-based craft brewery and a maker of land, underwater and air drones that “take inspiration from the clever tricks that animals use to move”.
The latest round of investments include Grass & Co, founded by brothers Ben and Tom Grass in 2019, which makes cannabidiol (CBD) products using chemicals found in hemp, which are stocked in stores including Selfridges and Boots.
According to coverage by The Guardian, the fund has shelled out over £1.4 billion to a total of 1,190 companies so far, with 335 of those companies converting government loans into government equity stakes after finding private investments to match the government’s money.
The investment into the CBD oil company is bittersweet, in that it’s obviously great news for the recipient and great to see the United Kingdom recognize the economic potential of the merging cannabis industry, however, to some degree it highlights the deficiencies of the United Kingdom’s medical cannabis program.
As we previously reported, out of an estimated 1.4 million suffering patients, only thousands of patients have been prescribed a cannabis product by the United Kingdom directly, or indirectly via a private medical practitioner.
Patients deserve unfettered safe access to all forms of effective medical cannabis, which is unfortunately not the case in the United Kingdom.