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Why Israel’s Medical Marijuana Startups Need More Attention

A lot of what’s happening in Israel's medical marijuana industry is going under the radar
Cannabis plant (Kobi Gideon/Flash90)
Cannabis plant (Kobi Gideon/Flash90)

Medical marijuana and cannabis oils is big business. The industry is worth tens of billions of dollars, and the United States has been slow to adopt the trend. Despite your view on the industry, it has a lot of potential.

Israel is known for its start-up culture, and we’ve been silently developing technology that some of the world’s largest companies use.

But a lot of what’s happening in the medical marijuana industry is going under the radar. There have been a lot of major developments, and Canada made a major announcement just this month.

Israel’s Together just signed a deal with an unnamed Canadian company that will bring in hundreds of millions of shekels. The deal involves five tonnes of cannabis oil supplied to the Canadian company.

Globus Pharma, a subsidiary of Together, will supply 50 tonnes of dried inflorescences as part of the deal. Perhaps more important in the entire deal is that both companies are also collaborating on research and development.

“Companies who wish to transfer employees to a Canadian subsidiary, or companies who wish to open offices in Canada may transfer staff without obtaining a confirmation from Service Canada,” explains immigration lawyer Ronen Kurzfeld.

The extent of the research and development between the two companies may lead to further economic benefits for Israel.

Canada is a natural fit for the industry since medicinal use of marijuana has been legal since 2001, and recreational use will be legalized this year. Permits still need to be secured, with both companies expecting permits to be authorized.

Israel receives a lot of praise for its start-up culture, and it continues to impress in two major fields: health technology and marijuana research. Israel is a leader in both fields, and as more countries see the benefits of legalization and medicinal marijuana, Israel will benefit.

Reports suggest that 400 Israeli farmers have already applied for cannabis growing permits.

Israel’s startups are starting to pick up traction, and Canada remains one of the largest supporters in the medical-cannabis industry. Joe Oliver, former finance minister in Canada, also announced that he will be raising funds for PlantExt.

PlantExt is an Israeli-based company that also specializes in researching the medical benefits of cannabis.

The market in Israel has benefitted greatly from foresight into medical marijuana. Israel was one of the first countries to support medicinal research into the plant. Last year, Israel also legalized the manufacture, export and cultivation of medical marijuana. There were 500 companies flocking to capitalize on the market.

Treatments that are being researched in Israel are also promising. Over-the-counter products are expected to be delivered by PlantExt in the next year. A shift in attitudes and policies have also led to Israel and Canada working together.

Canada and Israel are at the forefront of the industry because they’re two of the countries that started in the industry first. It’s an emerging market, and Israeli startups have a real chance to enter the market now before the United States and other countries get a foothold in the market. It will be big business for Israel and their partners.

About the Author
 Jacob Maslow is passionate about writing. For more than ten years, he's used that passion to transform the web presence of a number of legal and medical professionals in creative, innovative and effective ways that get them noticed in a crowded field. Jacob is originally from Brooklyn. He packed up his five children and made Aliyah in 2014. Jacob's experience and varied interests lend themselves to a diverse palette of topics ranging from technology, marketing, politics, social media, ethics, current affairs, family matters and more. In his spare time, Jacob enjoys being an active member of social media including groups on Facebook and taking in the latest movies. 
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