Medical cannabis grower Little Green Pharma (ASX: LGP) has been given a significant operational boost in the form of an expanded medicinal cannabis licence and a new manufacturing licence from Australia’s Office of Drug Control (ODC).
Obtaining a manufacturing licence covers Little Green’s new manufacturing facility at which it intends to produce cannabis extracts for development into final product form, as part of a broader strategy of serving healthcare practitioners and their patients amid a growing industry need for higher CBD ratio products.
The new set of licencing conditions means Little Green can cultivate and produce medicinal cannabis, as well as conducting ancillary activities, at its expanded cultivation facility and adjacent new manufacturing facility in Western Australia.
Having acquired the new licences, Little Green said it expects first planting at its expanded cultivation facility to take place in next quarter with as many as nine flowering rooms, and at full capacity, is able to produce sufficient cannabis flower to manufacture more than 110,000 bottles of medicinal cannabis oil every year.
Expanding Little Green
Little Green’s sequential expansion in recent months has seen the company launch a new medicinal cannabis oil product called LGP Classic CBD 50 – a whole plant extract cannabidiol (CBD) oil without the addition of the psychoactive tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) compound.
LGP Classic CBD 50 is classified as a Schedule 4 medicine, which simplifies the prescription pathway for healthcare practitioners in Australia, as it does not require state health approval in addition to Therapeutic Goods Administration approval.
The company says its existing range of three classic products are already listed on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG) for export and that the company is also seeking further permits.
According to research submitted to Australia’s Senate Community Affairs Reference Committee, approximately 23% of all medicinal cannabis products prescribed in Australia are CBD-based, with cannabis oil oral solutions the most commonly prescribed medicinal cannabis product.
“These licences mark an important step in expanding Little Green’s cultivation and manufacturing capacity and achieving internal vertical integration and cost reduction,” said Little Green managing director Fleta Solomon.
“The expanded medicinal cannabis licence and new manufacturing licence will give us greater production flexibility and the capacity to fulfil recently signed purchase agreements with distributors in Germany and the UK,” she said.
As a demonstration of the type of offtake deals it is seeking to make, Little Green announced it would sell its classic medicinal cannabis oils and cultivated dried cannabis flower to Berlin-based Deutsche Medizinalcannabis (DEMECAN), last month.
The three-year deal could see as much as 1 tonne of dried flower sold to DEMECAN every year into a market that is considered to be the largest in Europe. Germany represents a significant commercial opportunity for cannabis products as the largest medicinal cannabis market in Europe, estimated to be worth €7.7 billion (A$12.5 billion) by 2028.