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Cian McClellandThe thread to creating market readiness in the last 3 articles has been about increasing public access to quality cannabis medicine. Two of the most important factors to increase access are price and availability.
It is well known that cannabis products are overpriced globally, but in South Africa they are ridiculously overpriced. The reason is that most of the products on the shelf are imported and have a high cost of production. They are subject to exchange rate fluctuations, import duties and many foreign overhead costs.

South Africa exports flowers to be extracted and made into medicine that is sold back to us at inflated prices…sound familiar? These types of international pharmaceutical grade cannabis products are usually very refined in expensive EU GMP or FDA approved laboratories and therefore ask a higher price. But do we need or actually want that so-called higher grade of oil?

Some local manufacturers peg their pricing to just below their comparative imported product and therefore make very large margins. This is unfair and borders on exploitation of a desperate local public.

South African cannabis medicines should be literally half their current price and the only way to do that is to support local companies that manufacture quality products for lower prices.

More and more people are getting into this industry for the money and want to cash in on the new green-rush. A lot seem to be losing sight that the objective right now is to build a local industry that heals as many people as possible, an industry that provides affordable and effective medicines that are accessible to all, regardless of their LSM.

The way to make affordable medicines is by returning to the basics, to the more traditional methods of extraction and manufacture. There is no need for the refined international products and in fact, the parts they remove have medicinal properties that contribute to the entourage effect.

Why remove them other than to justify an expensive process and larger margins?

There are between eighty to one hundred cannabinoids and about three hundred non-cannabinoid chemicals found in different cannabis plants and the extracted full spectrum oil. We partly understand what only nine of those cannabinoids do in the human body and medical research is still scratching the surface.

We know that full spectrum medicine heals better and faster than isolated medicine, so why would we want to refine and remove the other chemicals that form part of the natural balance and healing ability of the oil.

Cold extraction or a light winterisation can be used to remove chlorophyll and some waxes, but we should leave the oil as raw as possible because even the lipids and waxes play a role in the healing process in humans and animals.

Making medicine from FECO that has only been filtered once or twice leaves all of the goodness in the oil. This requires a lot less equipment and processing time and the cost of production is therefore a lot lower. This saving can and must be passed on to the consumer to increase access and build the local market.

Druid’s Garden recently cut the price of most of its full spectrum CBD products in half. A 500mg Full Spectrum CBD Drops was R595 and is now R295, but is that feasible and sustainable?

Druid’s has done extensive market research and is confident that this is a fair retail price point for a locally manufactured product that is actually more effective than the expensive international imports.

Druid’s has taken a gamble that a much lower price will mean higher volumes but is confident that the objective to place affordable medicine in the hands of the people is what is most important. This plant is magical and empowers those that harness its healing properties for the good of all.

Hopefully more local companies follow these price cuts to make it easier for the public to support the development of the local industry by purchasing locally cultivated and manufactured Full Spectrum oils that provide maximum healing benefits.
Hopefully more local companies follow these price cuts to make it easier for the public to support the development of the local industry by purchasing locally cultivated and manufactured Full Spectrum oils that provide maximum healing benefits.
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