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Portugal: Cannabis exports continue to grow, but Infarmed rectifies figures released in March

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Photo: DR

Cannabis produced in Portugal is already heading to four continents, according to data from the report released by Infarmed, referring to the medical cannabis sector in Portugal. In total, Portugal has exported more than 15 tons of cannabis, with Israel, Germany and Spain as the main destinations. The data referring to imports has not yet been released, but Cannareporter noticed a discrepancy in the values, related to the 30 tons of exports disclosed six months ago.

Contacted by telephone, Vasco Bettencourt admitted that there may have been a lapse in the disclosure of data in March and explained to Cannareporter that the correct values ​​that should be considered are those that have now been announced in this report. “There is a correction, these data were for gross production, not for net production or exports. These are the actual data, which happened for sure,” he clarified.

The figures announced last March referred “only to gross production and not to the final data, after quality controls and the export certificates issued”, guaranteed Vasco Bettencourt, who added that he was sure that this year Portugal will surpass “the 10 tons of exportation”.

Exports don't stop growing
Even so, the amount of cannabis produced in Portugal for export continues to grow. In recent years, several companies have announced successful exports from Portugal. However, there was no clear idea of ​​the size of the export operations. According to data from the regulator, more than 15 tons of Portuguese cannabis have been exported since 2016 and the trend is for growth. In the first half of 2022, 4327 kg of cannabis produced in Portugal were exported, and this could exceed 6 tons by the end of the year. In 2021, the total volume of exports was 5694kg of cannabis, growing 17,4% compared to 2020 (the year in which 4850kg were exported).

Portugal exported in 2016 and 2017 a few hundred tons of cannabis (through the operation of the company Terra Verde, which obtained its first license when it was still a subsidiary of GW Pharmaceuticals), and only after 2018 (the year in which there is no record of exports) did exports return, always growing. (See chart below).

Israel dominates exports, following crop growth trend

According to the data available in the report, Israel is the leader in the import of Portuguese cannabis, having already imported almost 8 tons of cannabis. The countries whose exports are more expressive are Germany, Israel and Spain. Portugal currently exports to a group of 10 countries, with the destination countries being Germany, Israel, Malta, Spain and the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Australia, France, Luxembourg and the Czech Republic. (See Table Below)

However, despite the clear figures for exports, there are still some doubts regarding the quantities actually cultivated in Portuguese facilities, compared to the various imports that have taken place in recent years.

Export destination countries, in kg

Another of the highlights of the report is the possibility that the destination of Portuguese exports will be led by Germany, after the partnership announcements by Portuguese companies MHI Medicinal Cultivation and CannexporPharma as well as from akanda with German companies.

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