Cann Global’s hopes of licensing and distributing a cannabis formula in Australia used and championed by Olivia Newton-John during her breast cancer battle have been dashed – at least for now.
In a brief note in its 2021 year-end financial report, which highlighted a decline in revenue but narrowing losses, the company blamed import barriers for scuppering plans to bring the formula – developed by the singer’s husband, John Easterling – to the Australian market.
Cann Global had signed an exclusive global agreement to secure the Intellectual Property (IP) rights to Easterling’s formulations in late 2019.
Easterling, a well-known cannabis advocate and a non-executive director of Cann Global, spent six years developing the formula, known as ‘Olivia’s Choice’.
He also founded the Amazon Herb Company in 1990, which has generated more than $100 million in revenue worldwide.
Newton-John said her use of the cannabis medicine, in conjunction with conventional treatment, helped with pain relief, mobility and increased her healthy blood count.
But almost two years after announcing the IP deal with Easterling, Cann Global said it will not be able to offer the formulation to Australian patients.
“Cann Global has continued to work towards bringing Olivia’s Choice to the Australian market. As part of this work the company has found that it is unable to import some of the raw materials required for the production of Olivia’s Choice formula under current legislation,” the company said in its preliminary financial report.