As Germany marches forward with its broadened medical marijuana program, a new government agency has been created to oversee this new dawn for medicine in the European nation. The Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM) has created a new cannabis agency which will control all aspects of the medical marijuana landscape in Germany moving forward.
First and foremost, the agency, once fully established, will oversee the cultivation of cannabis for medical purposes. It will begin its very important task by starting a European Union-wide search for potential cultivators. The chosen companies will be armed with the task of growing pharmaceutical-grade, domestic cannabis for Germans
The BfArM expects domestically grown cannabis to be available in 2019. Until that time and even after German crops are harvested, the import of cannabis from other countries, such as the Netherlands and Canada, may continue to be a viable and relied upon source for medicine in Germany.
In an interesting twist on policy for cannabis distribution, the government agency will purchase the crop. They will then set a producer’s fee and manage the sale of cannabis to drug manufacturers, wholesalers, and pharmacies.
While the agency does not control the price of the medicine on the pharmacy shelf, government influence will be significant.
This is a very important step in Germany’s ongoing journey toward offering patients needed medicine for some of the most serious health issues facing humanity today.