Within a month of achieving an Australian first for medicinal cannabis oil exports to patients in the UK, Little Green Pharma (ASX: LGP) has now been given the green light to manufacture its own extracts in-house from the next crop.
The approval is set to cut manufacturing costs and improve efficiencies for the Perth-based company which listed on the ASX in February.
The permit granted by the Office of Drug Control (ODC) will be valid until 10 March 2021, allowing LGP to manufacture the extracts for supply to its exclusive partner certified by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) to produce finished medicinal cannabis products.
"Receiving this Manufacture Permit gives us the internal capability to manufacture cannabis extracts at our manufacturing premises and is a significant event for Little Green Pharma," says LGP managing director Fleta Solomon.
"We are now only waiting for our expanded ODC Medicinal Cannabis Cultivation and Production Permit which, once granted, will allow us to begin first planting at our expanded cultivation facility and to significantly expand our production operations.
"This increased production capacity will give Little Green Pharma the ability to meet both Australian and offshore demand for medicinal cannabis products."
LGP has been busy on the export front, securing a German deal in February with Berlin-based Deutsche Medizinalcannabis GmbH (DEMECAN), and in April its first export of Australian medicinal cannabis products for patients arrived in the UK.
The products are distributed in the UK by Astral Health, a UK-based specialist importer and distributor of medicinal cannabis products and subsidiary of the LYPHE Group.
On 2 March 2020, the UK Home Office and MHRA announced that import permits may now be granted based on anticipated prescription quantities. This announcement sees improvements made to the access pathway for medicinal cannabis, increasing the efficiency of the process of exporting products to the UK.
According to a report from Prohibition Partners, the UK industry is forecast to grow to £$1.05 billion (A$2.10 billion) by 2024, with an expected 400,000 patients being prescribed medicinal cannabis.
"Little Green Pharma is one of a few companies with GMP-produced cannabinoid medicines available in the UK. We are proud to be leading the charge in helping patients across the globe access quality Australian medicinal cannabis products," Solomon said after the first exports reached Great Britain.
Australian Minister for Health Greg Hunt was also positive about the breakthrough.
"This first export of Australian-produced medicinal cannabis oils to the UK marks an important step in fulfilling Australia's vision of building a global medicinal cannabis industry capable of supplying quality medicinal cannabis products to both Australian and overseas patients," he said.Never miss a news update, subscribe here. Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.
Business News Australia