One of Australia's leading medicinal cannabis companies has all its ducks lined up in a row.
Melbourne-based Cann Group (ASX: CAN) has today announced the signing of a nationwide distribution deal with healthcare services and products supplier Symbion, as well as the first arrival of a high THC oil formulation shipment from strategic Canadian partner Aurora Cannabis (TSE:ACB).
The Symbion deal will give Cann access to a network of more than 4,000 retail pharmacies and 1,300 hospitals throughout Australia, and the company will carry Cann's full range of imported products to supply Special Access Scheme (SAS) patients.
Permits are also in place for the import and supply of an additional five product presentations being supplied by Aurora.
In addition, the group notes it is well advanced in its product manufacturing validation program with IDT Australia with expectations to launch its first locally sourced and manufactured formulations in the first quarter of 2020.
CEO Peter Crock says the company is now is now entering its commercialisation phase after successfully establishing a reliable cultivation and production capability.
"We are now operating our existing Southern and Northern production facilities at full capacity, with in excess of 40 harvests now completed, and we are advancing our product manufacturing capabilities with IDT Australia," says Crock.
Crock, who joined the company one year before its may 2017 IPO and is also chairman of the Medicinal Cannabis Industry Australia (MCIA), says Cann's progression to commercial product supply represents an important milestone for the Company, and for the Australian industry in general.
"The Victorian Government acknowledged the progress made in the development of local industry capabilities when it announced recently the Government's decision to cease its manufacturing role," he says.
"Cann's development and production expertise - together with the specialist manufacturing capabilities provided by our partner, IDT Australia - ensures Australian patients will have access to high quality and safe medicinal cannabis products.
"We are well underway with our major expansion program near Mildura, which is expected to be commissioned towards the end of next calendar year, and should consolidate Cann's position as the leading local producer, with ample capacity to meet local patient needs."
The news comes just one day after the release of Prohibition Partners' 'The Global Cannabis Report', which showed the number of medicinal cannabis licences in Australia had almost doubled to 81 since its Oceania-focused report was published last year.
While this is well behind the gigantic figures of 17,350 and 796 reported in the US and Canada respectively, it still puts Australia in fourth place worldwide for licences, behind Thailand at 200 for medicinal cannabis sales.
Australia also has the third-highest number of pharmaceutical cannabis trademarks lodged at 329, placing the industry ahead of New Zealand (172), Germany (131), Mexico (122) and Switzerland (99).Never miss a news update, subscribe here. Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.
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