KAMPALA – The construction of a $12 million (UGX44.5 billion) medical marijuana production plant in Kasese District is near complete, paving way for Uganda to start producing and exporting the drug for medicinal purposes.
Located in Hima Town Council, the factory sits on 12.5 acres of land. The plant has five greenhouses of marijuana weed and a processing factory.
Mr Benjamin Cadet, the Director Industrial Hemp Uganda Limited, who own the plant, said they expect to export the first batch of medical marijuana by March 2020
“The final product of the plant is expected to respond to the growing world demand for medical treatment of skin ailment, chronic pain, epilepsy and cancer,” he said.
The company has partnered with Together Pharma, an Israel company, to form a trade name Industrial Globus to boost their production.
In August, Daily Monitor reported that a team from the European Union had approved Uganda’s medical marijuana products, paving the way for local cannabis growers to tap into the global legal marijuana market. The newspaper added that a team of medical cannabis inspectors from the Netherlands inspected marijuana gardens in Hima, Kasese District between July 29 and August 4. They met in Kampala before they issued a certificate of compliance to Industrial Globus Uganda Ltd covering (August 6, 2019 – August 5, 2020.)
The EU inspectors also certified WHO-GAP (Guidelines on good agricultural and collection practices (GACP) for medicinal plants; EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) -Guideline on GAP and GACP for Herbal Medicinal plants. They also approved propagation through cloning of vegetal material, cultivation, harvesting, drying, curling, packaging and storage of cannabis inflorescences for medical use.
At least 50 companies have applied through the Ministry of Health to join Industrial Globus Uganda Ltd in growing weed for medical purposes. According to the health minister, Jane Ruth Aceng, the Government is yet to progress to the stage of granting operational permits for entities to grow and process marijuana for medical export.