This relative newcomer to the cannabis industry in Germany has ambitious plans for both the medical and recreational segments of the market
They may not be making the top of the cannaleague tables (yet), but German Medical, partnered with another established company called Kineo Medical which supplies a wide range of medical supplies and devices, including Covid PPE, has ambitious plans.
Located in Frankfurt, GM has achieved the important first step of attaining the necessary certifications to handle and distribute cannabis per German law. They are currently setting up a distribution network and importing cannabis into the country for domestic and foreign sales.
Even more interesting, however, is how they are planning for the next stage of cannabis reform. “German Medical is the only cannabis company in the country – and one of the few globally that already generates healthy profits. We are also an established partner of multiple municipal decision-makers. As such, we are confident we will have market solutions to any business paradigm or market challenge created by the legislative process to legalize adult use,” said Rocky Musleh, partner for growth management.
A Model Recreational Cannabis Dispensary Project
The company brings unique expertise to the equation. Namely, they have experience in supporting municipal infrastructure campaigns, purchasing, and PR. Because of this, German Medical has a letter of intent with the city of Hanau, located about half an hour from Frankfurt, to operate the city’s first recreational cannabis dispensary, pending German federal legalization. The company has been working with the city since the beginning of 2022. “We already have a successful track record with the city because we have worked with them for the past several years. We demonstrated our reliability during the pandemic. As such, we are the supplier of choice when it comes to the first steps of legalization,” said Musleh.
Beyond the first-of-its-kind arrangement with the city of Hanau, the company is also creating another first-to-the-market innovation. A unique cannabis showroom is also under development in Frankfurt to demonstrate to municipal decision-makers across the country how their planned chain of cannabis specialty stores will look.
German Medical and Kineo Medical have also drafted a comprehensive position paper about the legalization of cannabis in Germany.
Beyond its medical and recreational distribution plans, the company wants to promote cannabis as a legitimate medicine via its own R&D. The interdisciplinary team is developing studies on both the effects of and more traditional drug interactions with cannabis.
Beyond this, the company is planning to organize CME certification seminars in cities across Germany with renowned experts in the field, as well as hold bespoke on-location seminars and classes via digital channels.
The State of The German Medical and Recreational Cannabis Market
The German cannabis market has been growing, with some setbacks, since 2017, when the Bundestag passed a law mandating that insurance companies reimburse the cost of medical cannabis when prescribed by a doctor. Since then, the market has grown dramatically, but most experts agree that even the medical market has not reached its potential yet. In large part this is because insurers are becoming more stringent about reimbursement and doctors are still reluctant to prescribe either medical flowers or extracts.
In the meantime, the newly elected “Traffic Light” coalition government which won the 2021 fall national election has promised to implement recreational reform. The Bundestag has also tasked the German Health Minister to introduce draft legislation by the end of the year. While there are no specific deadlines, it is widely expected that the bill will pass early next year, with full recreational reform to be implemented at the beginning of 2024.
Many questions remain about how all of this will be implemented, but one of the clearer developments so far is that there will be a national dispensary system set up, separate from pharmacies, to serve the adult-use market. Because online sales, for now, will not be legal, the brick-and-mortar dispensary system will be the only legal avenue for German adults to buy recreational cannabis. This means that in less than 12 months after reform legislation passes, cities that agree to move forward with municipal cannabis reform will have to establish a procedure for licensing and training. Implementation is a place where reform has repeatedly stuttered after being made legal on a federal level. The situation in Canada is perhaps the best international example.
It is the goal of German Medical and Kineo Medical to help move the country into the recreational market in a way to avoid unnecessary delays. The company’s partners have a long track record in working with municipalities in Germany. Beyond that, when it comes to international recreational cannabis implementation experience, the company is also collaborating with the administrators of the first Swiss recreational cannabis trial in Basel.