Thailand has removed cannabis and hemp extracts from its narcotics list, officials said on Monday, the latest effort to promote the development of marijuana products for medical purposes.
Thailand, which has a tradition of using cannabis to relieve pain and fatigue, legalized marijuana for medical use and research last year to help boost agricultural income.
“The intention is to allow extracts to be used in medicine, cosmetics and food and support hemp as a cash crop,” Tares Krassanairawiwong, Secretary-General of the Thai Food and Drug Administration, told reporters, adding that hemp seed and oil would also be exempt.
So far, only hospitals and research facilities are allowed to apply for licenses to develop medical extracts from cannabis, but businesses see an opportunity.
Ishaan Shah, from the billionaire Shah family, founded the Ganja Group in Bangkok and plans to supply medical cannabis to the family’s GP Group’s pharmaceutical arm, Megalife Sciences Pcl.
“We are working towards cannabidiol (CBD) extraction, that’s our short term goal,” Shah told Reuters.
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