Over five years, Denmark has issued more than 300 permits for the destruction of 145,541 kilograms of medical cannabis, according to data from the country’s Parliamentary Health Commission. The destroyed cannabis includes various categories, such as cannabis cultivated for the country’s pilot program currently underway, and could have been destroyed for any one of a number of reasons.
A significant portion of the medical cannabis produced under the medical cannabis experiment in Denmark has not been put on the market and has been intentionally destroyed for various reasons, according to government data reported by MJBizDaily.
More than 300 permits have been issued in Denmark for the destruction of 145,541 kilograms of cannabis, said Denmark’s Parliamentary Health Commission in response to a parliamentary inquiry earlier this year.
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Government Data on Cannabis Destruction in Denmark
The figure of 145 tons of cannabis destruction in Denmark includes all cannabis destroyed by companies authorized to cultivate cannabis as part of the country’s pilot program—from the date these companies received authorization to operate, a government spokesperson told MJBizDaily via email.
The amount of legal cannabis destroyed as part of the Danish medical pilot program, initiated in 2018, has surpassed the country’s total declared cannabis production to global drug regulators.
A list of companies currently authorized to manufacture bulk cannabis and primary products in Denmark is available here (Excel file). This list includes Canadian company Aurora Cannabis and Australian company Little Green Pharma, as well as Medican, a medical cannabis production company headquartered in Helsinge, Denmark.
Reasons for Cannabis Destruction in Denmark
Various reasons can lead to the destruction of crops: poor quality, regulatory factors, or insufficient demand.
“As our destruction procedures are not specific to the purpose or origin of the crop, the destroyed quantity may include cannabis cultivated for the pilot program, imported for the pilot program, as well as cannabis cultivated under the development program,” said the spokesperson for the Danish Medicines Agency to MJBizDaily.
Although the government cannot specify why the cannabis was destroyed in Denmark, the response to the parliamentary inquiry indicates that the destruction figure in Denmark could include defective or discarded products and all cannabis cultivated under the development program. This program allows companies to grow medical cannabis so that they can refine their cultivation and manufacturing methods and be authorized to participate in the national pilot program.
Data for 2022
The Danish Medicines Agency reported that for 2022, the amount of “lost or destroyed” cannabis amounted to 10,753 kilograms—a figure that does not include cannabis destroyed under the development program.
Last year, Danish companies recorded sales of approximately 62.5 million crowns, or just over 8 million euros.
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