European Union Good Manufacturing Practice (EU-GMP) certification audits involving cannabis facilities in Canada and elsewhere are screeching to a halt given the travel restrictions in place in most of the world because of the coronavirus pandemic. Reports MJ Biz

The discontinuation of the audits has meant that some overseas medical cannabis producers can’t receive the key certification to begin exports to the EU market.

In particular, German GMP inspectors aren’t traveling to Canada, Colombia, Lesotho and other export nations outside the EU to certify medical cannabis production facilities.

As a result, the companies whose facilities weren’t audited before the pandemic now face a challenging situation:

This means, for now, that the handful of EU-GMP certified companies supplying Germany with medical cannabis from Canada and from inside the EU are likely to continue enjoying an effective oligopoly.The chances of getting EU inspectors to travel overseas are slim.

Audits are necessary to receive the EU-GMP certificate, which typically is required to begin exports to EU markets.

That might not last long, however, as domestic producers in EU countries such as Denmark or Portugal become certified by their respective domestic health agencies.

That would allow medical cannabis companies in those countries to ship throughout the European Union, which would start to displace and eventually replace more expensive Canadian imports.

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COVID-19 crisis effectively freezes European GMP cannabis inspections in Canada, elsewhere