Australia Set to be Weed Friendly By End of Next Year

After a number of promising clinical trials, this week NSW law came into effect so doctors can prescribe cannabis based medicine to extremely ill patients. Victoria, Tasmania and Queensland are next to enact the changes then it will sweep up the nation*, effectively introducing weed as a therapeutic good, though under heavy regulation. So don’t blaze up in the street just yet.

*Except for South Australia who have not pledged their support.

In a perfect coincidence Creso Pharma, a pharmaceutical group in the medical marijuana business with operations largely based in Canada and Europe, are planning to float their company on the ASX next month. 750,000 Aussies use weed each week, with those numbers the medical marijuana market enjoying even some of those users as patients, if the legislation were to take effect nationwide, the industry is sure to be highly lucrative.

Medical marijuana has a host of unlikely supporters, conservative heavyweights Alan Jones, Tony Abbott, Mike Baird, Malcolm Turnbull, John Howard and Barnaby Joyce are all for it. Beyond helping the chronically and terminally ill this widespread backflip on standard Liberal policy has raised questions. Like why perhaps these gentleman all of a sudden have dollar signs beaming from their eyes? These admittedly experimental pollies have taken a step into the open and wiped away the druggy stigma attached to weed in one legislative swoop. It was just one cheeky drag ok, no more.

California’s medical marijuana industry was earlier this year valued at $2.7 Billion, Colorado’s industry is worth a not so modest $1 Billion also. The steps taken to legalise marijuana in Australia this week are but tip toes towards this burgeoning wealth but if country wide reform were to come into effect the market would be booming.

A Sydney University study estimated the industry to be worth $150 Million industry, with an expected 8500 kilograms of cannabis needed to keep up with demand. Beyond helping the ill legalising medical marijuana would see a huge opportunity for employment in regulation and cultivation, and notably wealth creation. The logistics of undertaking such a large operation on the edge of illegal activity would be immense. The size of the greenhouse required ? Just 12 acres or so.

After solid investment in clinical trials to verify scientific use of medical cannabis the prescription will be afforded to sufferers of severe epilepsy and the terminally ill. Outside of Australia marijuana is offered to treat a range of mental illnesses, notably anxiety and depression, in addition multiple sclerosis, arthritis, dementia and to stimulate appetite in cancer and HIV/AIDS patients. Or you know writer’s cramp from typing too much and difficulty sleeping whatever it takes to get your very own medical marijuana identification card and access to over 1,000 stockists across California. Look at the card though, seriously.


The benefits of this once illicit medicine have been largely under-researched, lamented as stoner’s drug the stigma is being washed away with successful clinical trials and waves of verifiable research. Just last year the Lambert Initiative saw Barry and Joy Lambert donate almost $35 million to Sydney University for a centre dedicated to researching cannabinoid based medicine. The Lambert’s directed their fortune towards marijuana research after their granddaughter found relief from her severe epilepsy in weed.

With this immense funding the centre is focusing on childhood epilepsy, nausea associated with cancer, chronic pain, obesity, anorexia, addictions, mental health and dementia. Preliminary research suggests cannabinoids  inhibits tumour growth in some cancers, an incredible development. The University of Canberra has also run with this concept and are currently looking into the applications of medical marijuana in treating melanoma, for a nation scorched by skin cancer this could benefit millions.

Demystifying weed and it’s medicinal properties goes beyond blunts and bongs, taking a once ridiculed drug to sharing the benefits with the whole population. No you won’t be able to have your casual joint prescribed for you but it’s certainly becoming more acceptable.

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