By / January 30, 2023

Argentina to Boost Cannabis Industry With Exports

On Wednesday, Argentina officially launched a new government agency to boost its medical cannabis and hemp industry.

Known as the Hemp and Medical Cannabis Industry Regulatory Agency, ARICCAME represents “the first working group of a new national agency to regularize and promote the country’s nascent cannabis industry, which ministers hope will create new jobs and revenue-generating exports for the South American nation.”

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A New Door Opens for Argentina

“This opens the door for Argentina to begin a new path in terms of industrial exports, based on enormous global demand,” said the Argentine Minister for the Economy, Sergio Massa, at an event marking the launch of the new agency.

According to Reuters, “Massa said the agency would begin on Thursday to regularize programs and coordinate with the different provinces and [the] industrial sector, adding that Argentina was already counting on demand for projects related to the agribusiness sector.”

Argentine Regulator Sets Objectives

On ARICCAME’s official website, the agency describes its mission and objectives :

“We are the agency that regulates the import, export, cultivation, industrial production, manufacture, marketing and acquisition, in any capacity, of seeds of the Cannabis plant, cannabis and its derivatives for medicinal or industrial purposes.”

General Objectives

The website also lists the agency’s “general objectives” as:

  • To establish, through the respective regulations, the regulatory framework for the entire chain of production and domestic marketing and/or export of the Cannabis Sativa L. plant.
  • Promote a new agro-industrial productive sector for the commercial manufacture of medicines, phytotherapeutic products, food and cosmetics for human use, medicines and food for veterinary use, as well as the different products made possible by industrial hemp
  • To generate the framework for the adaptation to the regulatory regime, of the cultivation and production of cannabis derivatives for existing health use, guaranteeing the traceability and quality of the products in order to safeguard the right to health of the users of medical cannabis
  • Reintroduce hemp in Argentina and all its derivatives: food, construction materials, textile fiber, cellulose and bioplastics with low environmental impact
  • To promote scientific research and technological progress in the sector, fostering favorable conditions for these industries in the country

Specific Objectives For ARICCAME

  • Establish clear rules that provide legal certainty to the sector and encourage federal participation
  • Articulate through agreements and conventions with other state entities with intervention in the matter
  • Determine the system of licenses and administrative authorizations for the production chain
  • To generate quality standards that safeguard the right to health of users and consumers of cannabis/hemp products
  • Controlling non-compliance with the regulatory regime

Cannabis Legalization in Argentina

Argentina legalized cannabis oil for medical use in 2017. Three years later, the country legalized home cannabis cultivation for patients.

The launch of the new agency is part of an effort by the Argentine government to continue reforming the medical cannabis program, something the South American country identified as a priority last year.

Cannabis Industry Could Generate Thousands of New Jobs

According to Reuters, Francisco Echarren will head the newly launched agency. In a statement, Echarren said, “the industry could generate thousands of new jobs, as well as technological developments and new products for export.”

“We have a huge challenge ahead of us,” Reuters quoted Echarren as saying, “not only in setting up a new industry but in giving millions of Argentines access to products that improve the quality of life.”

(Featured image by Terrance Barksdale via Pexels)

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