Cannabis sales can grow ‘tenfold’ if Europe legalises recreational use

By: Wajeeh Khan
Wajeeh Khan
Wajeeh is an active follower of world affairs, technology, an avid reader, and loves to play table tennis in… read more.
on Jun 23, 2021
  • The European cannabis market, which is primarily medicinal, is currently valued at about €4 million.
  • Cantourage CEO says this market is likely to grow in the next three to four years to about €3 billion.
  • Including recreational markets coming online in Europe, the market can further grow tenfold.

The European cannabis industry has evolved tremendously in recent years, both on the medicinal and recreational front. Germany legalised medicinal cannabis in 2017 – a hallmark that saw other European countries, including Poland, Italy, and the United Kingdom to follow in its footsteps. With its medicinal programme, France is now also considering legalising cannabis.

On the recreational side, Luxembourg has already decriminalised the use of cannabis. The Netherlands has started producing cannabis legally and selling it into the recreational market. Several political parties in Germany also have legalisation of recreational cannabis in their programmes.

Florian Holzapfel discusses the European cannabis market on CNBC’s “Street Signs Europe”

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According to chief executive Florian Holzapfel of the European medical cannabis company, Cantourage, legalisation of recreational marijuana in Europe could grow the regional market by tenfold. On CNBC’s “Street Signs Europe”, the CEO said:

“Currently, the market in Europe, which is primarily medicinal market, is valued at around €3 million to €4 million. It’s relatively small right now but considering this market only started three to four years ago, that’s already scalable. The projections are that this market is going to grow in the next three to four years to around €3 billion. Again, that is mainly medicinal. If we see additional recreational markets coming online, we will see a market which is maybe tenfold as big as that.”

CEO Holzapfel’s remarks on potential regulatory headwinds in Europe

Founded in 2018, Cantourage is a relatively new supplier of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), also known as dronabinol, in Europe. Based in Berlin, the company aims at enabling a fully functioning cannabis ecosystem in Europe. Commenting on the potential regulatory headwinds in Europe, CEO Holzapfel said on Wednesday:

“Very often in the European Union, each country has different regimes. So, it’s important that a company knows how to work in this very fragmented environmental system. That’s what our platform was founded for. It’s very different to get a medicinal product in, say, Poland, compared to Germany. There are different requirements for that. That’s what we help our clients with, to get their product in all European markets.”

Cantourage is competing with Canopy Growth as a supplier of dronabinol in Europe. The Canadian firm had acquired the dronabinol business of Bionorica in 2019 to establish its dominance in the regional market. At the time of writing, Canopy shares are about 2% up on the intraday chart.

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