October 28, 2019

The Germany Cannabis Report: Key Insights

3min read

Since legalising medical cannabis in 2017, Germany has become a leading power in the European cannabis industry and is set to become a behemoth in the global market in the coming years.

The Germany Cannabis Report, highlights how rates of consumption have risen dramatically over the past two years, as more and more people have turned to cannabis to treat medical conditions. With the largest economy in Europe and the most developed cannabis sector on the continent, Germany is expected to continue leading the industry for the foreseeable future across regulation, healthcare, research and industry.

As demand continues to rise and Germany moves to a new model of commercialisation, Prohibition Partners have analysed industry changes to deliver key insights for brands and businesses looking to capitalise on the German market.

Cannabis Regulations

Since legalising in March 2017, the German government have established and invested in a singular entity to manage the country’s cannabis supply. The resulting BfArM (Bundesinstitut für Arzneimittel und Medizinprodukte/Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices) is responsible for regulations and licensing for both international imports and the developing domestic industry. The commitment to a central resource has allowed the German patient population to grow substantially. As of June 2019, over 60,000 people were registered as users of medical cannabis, a number which is expected to rise even more in coming years.

Presently, CBD products are also widely sold as; oil, capsules, crystals, cosmetics and edibles, are allowed on the market, though the levels of THC are strictly controlled.

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Healthcare Analysis

In 2018, there were 60,000 people who had been treated using medical cannabis, with a total of 95,000 prescriptions being made in Germany alone. Furthermore, 60% of medical cannabis prescriptions were reimbursed by insurance companies in 2019, meaning more people could afford treatment.

Source: GKV Spitzenverband 

With an estimated total healthcare expenditure of €420 billion, these figures can be expected to rise significantly over the coming years, as more and more people are treated with medical cannabis. As a result, the demand for cannabis will rise, creating more opportunities for cultivation and market growth.

David Henn, CEO of Cannamedical Pharma and official sponsor of The Germany Cannabis Report, said;

“Within the heart of Europe, Germany represents one of the greatest global potentials for medical cannabis. Depending on North American supply for previous years, Europe will now be able to meet its demand for medical cannabis from within the EU by the end of 2020.”

Commercial Opportunities

The medical cannabis market in Germany was estimated to be worth €73.7 million in 2018, a figure which is expected to rise dramatically over the coming years.

According to data gathered for The Germany Cannabis Report, Prohibition Partners predicts that by 2024, over a million German patients will have access to medical cannabis, and by 2028 the medical market alone will be worth €7.7 billion.

The fact that most cannabis medications are available for purchase in the country means that a wider range of conditions can be treated, allowing for such a high valuation. The German medical and insurance system is also embracing digitalisation, and so innovation in the technology sector is also likely.

Poised for Growth

Germany is already the market leader in Europe when it comes to the cannabis sector, and as regulations continue to evolve, so too will consumer behaviour and investment.

Kai-Friedrich Niermann, who runs the legal firm KFN+, explains;

“The market for medical cannabis has grown enormously since the change of legislation. Total sales will reach €100 million by the end of 2019, with the share of finished drugs and cannabis preparations permanently exceeding unprocessed cannabis flower.”

New cannabis businesses may find market entry difficult, due to applicants being required to have an understanding of IT security, banking, European privacy law, and data protection, but due to the fact that Germany has the largest consumer base for cannabis among all EU nations, the development of knowledge in these sectors will follow with investment and time.

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To understand more about the future of the German market, Prohibition Partners and IMN are co-hosting The Institutional Capital & Cannabis Conference on the 24th of February 2020, in Frankfurt. For more information on the event, visit the site.

The Germany Cannabis Report: Key Insights

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