Australian agribusiness and hemp food company ECS Botanics Holdings (ASX: ECS) has been granted a manufacturing licence by the federal Office of Drug Control for medicinal cannabis operations at a site near its current Tasmanian hub.
The licence allows ECS to conduct authorised activities for extracts and tinctures of cannabis and cannabis resin on development of it its proposed 4,600 square metre production facility.
Activities include the supply, packaging, transportation, storage and control of medicinal cannabis, and disposal or destruction of the drug.
The licence is valid for 12 months until November 2020.
Global medicinal cannabis consultancy group PharmOut has been engaged to assist with delivery of a feasibility study for the production facility.
PharmOut has a long track record in offering compliance, validation, regulatory, engineering and architectural consulting services and solutions to the pharmaceutical and life science industries.
It provides businesses with a competitive advantage by helping design, build and operate medicinal cannabis cultivation and manufacturing facilities.
PharmOut also offers planning and documentation services and can advise on cultivation and extraction processes for growers.
ECS now has the necessary licences to cultivate, supply and manufacture industrial hemp in Tasmania and also holds a grower licence in Queensland.
Managing director Alex Keach said the manufacturing licence is a positive development for the company.
“This is a significant milestone for [us], and a great step to becoming a leading diversified cannabis company in Australia,” he said.
“We will now commence a feasibility study and we look forward to reporting on additional licencing and development milestones.”
Due to favourable growing conditions, climate and irrigation, Tasmania is considered the premier Australian location for the production of high-quality industrial hemp.
ECS’ key production asset – a 44.62 hectare Tasmanian hemp farm acquired for $1.44 million – is at the heart of its current operations and the site of the company’s proposed medicinal cannabis cultivation and manufacturing facility.
At mid-afternoon, shares in ECS were up 9.62% to $0.057.