An opportunity for illicit cannabis growers to enter the legal medical cannabis industry is being offered by a government amnesty and commercial agreements to protect the value for growers.
Ruatoria based Hikurangi Cannabis Company has started a roadshow of hui with cannabis growers in the Tairawhiti region to develop agreements that will pay royalties to breeders who contribute strains that realise commercial value.
“The amnesty included in the new medicinal cannabis legislation is big news and very exciting for the industry but it will mean foreign companies and research organisations will be trying to lock up rights to commercialise New Zealand cannabis genetics” said Hikurangi operations manager Panapa Ehau.
“We have developed legal arrangements for New Zealand cannabis breeders to ensure their rights and interests are protected” said Mr Ehau.
Mr Ehau is encouraging breeders to get in touch to discuss opportunities for collaboration.
“There are plenty of growers in New Zealand, most with recently imported strains – but we are interested in connecting with the older breeders who have decades of experience.”
“As the people’s cannabis company we want to make sure breeders who contribute genetics into the legal industry get ongoing benefit from the knowledge, skills and expertise they have applied to plant breeding.”
Hikurangi research staff include plant scientists and a number of longtime cannabis breeders that have developed a breeding programme.
The Government’s medicinal cannabis bill has its long-awaited second reading in Parliament this afternoon by the Minister of Health, David Clark at 3pm with the final reading expected during the week of 10 December.