Following years of stalling on the issue of legal cultivation of cannabis for medicinal and industrial purposes, a Brazilian appeals court is set to rule on allowing businesses and farmers to grow cannabis, reported Reuters.
The Superior Court of Justice (STJ) made its intentions public to reach a final decision on a case that would set a precedent nationwide. Lawyers familiar with the case said until the court’s final ruling on the matter, which is expected within the next year, pending cases filed by companies seeking to plant cannabis in Brazil will be frozen. In a civil lawsuit, DNA Solucoes em Biotecnologia argued its right to import seeds and plant cannabis containing higher levels of CBD and less THC.
Why It Matters?
Currently, CBD products and those containing less than 0.2% THC can be legally prescribed in Brazil. Products with 0.2% THC or more can only be prescribed for terminal patients or when patients are not responding to traditional treatments.
While Brazil greenlighted both sales and production of cannabis products, businesses are still obliged to import some of the ingredients, given that growing Cannabis sativa L is forbidden in the country, leading to high costs for the final product.
The use of medical marijuana (MMJ) was legalized in Brazil in 2015. For now, patients can only obtain imported MMJ products with strict authorization from ANVISA (National Sanitary Surveillance Agency). Manufacturers have to import the semi-finished product and can only operate after receiving a special certificate from the agency.
In 2019, Brazil became the third Latin American country, after Uruguay and Colombia, to regulate the sale of medical marijuana products.
Arthur Arsuffi, a lawyer behind the biotech start-up in the case prior to the STJ, explained why Congress is stalling on the cannabis issue.
“Congress is a little afraid to decide on the cannabis issue, as it is a controversial one,” Arsuffi said. “So that has put off a decision and, given the number of lawsuits, the judiciary ends up having to settle the issue.”
Which MMJ Companies Will Benefit?
In September 2021, MediPharm Labs Corp.
LABSMEDIFMLZconfirmed a partnership with XLR8 BRAZIL, a distributor based in Rio de Janeiro. The two-year agreement would begin with the authorization of the product. Pursuant to it, MedPharm Labs provided a wide range of cannabis concentrate formats for the formulated products that XLR8 BRASIL will subsequently distribute.
Several months later, the CBD company Panacea Life Sciences, Inc.
PLSH partnered with MyPharma2Go to enter the country’s growing cannabis market.
In May 2022, Medical Marijuana, inc.
MJNAlaunched its first pharmaceutical subsidiary, HM Pharma. The company’s subsidiary, HempMeds Brasil was the first company to legally import products into Brazil in 2015 using the country’s compassionate use laws.
AVCNAVCNF0NN completed its first commercial export of 20 kg of full-spectrum high-CBD psychoactive cannabis extract to Brazil in 2021 through its majority-owned Colombian subsidiary Santa Marta Golden Hemp S.A.S. It has signed an exclusive license and supply agreement with a South American pharmaceutical company in 2022 to market its proprietary products. (Full Story)