Medcan has secured an exclusive agreement with US firm Vantage Hemp Co. to import its pharmaceutical-grade cannabidiol (CBD) into Australia.

The firm said the “multimillion-dollar deal” makes it the only Australian supplier of Vantage CBD to local pharmaceutical and biotech companies for use in developing medicinal cannabis products meeting Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) standards.

CEO Craig Cochran said the deal had two major advantages for firms wanting to manufacture CBD-based medicines.

Medcan CEO Craig Cochran

“Vantage is compliant under WHO Good Manufacturing Practices and the company’s distillate Drug Master File, compulsory for internationally recognised medication manufacture, has recently been submitted to the US Food and Drug Administration,” he said.

“The TGA has opened up the opportunity for the sale of low-dose cannabidiol over the counter in pharmacies, and it is only a matter of time before consumers demand other CBD-based medicines.

“Interest in bulk, pharmaceutical-grade CBD has skyrocketed in Australia, especially since global pharmaceutical players moved to secure a slice of the medicinal CBD market.”

Cochran said the fact Australia does not yet produce bulk amounts of medically accredited cannabinoids, a must for manufacturers, meant the deal with Vantage was “vital” if the country is to grow a local CBD-medical manufacturing industry.

“Having access to Vantage’s pharmaceutical-grade extracts is a game-changer for Australian pharma players interested in the production of medicinal cannabis products. It will shave time and millions of dollars off production/development costs.

“We hope that by making Vantage’s quality accredited cannabidiol available, it will foster local innovation and grow the local medicinal CBD industry.

“Increased awareness of CBD, diminishing prejudices, [and] a major shift in the medical fraternity’s trust in opioids are all contributing to medicinal cannabis fast becoming a more attractive option for patients.”

Vantage chief revenue officer Harvinder Johal added: “Exporting Vantage’s formulations to Australia allows us to share our expertise and ingredients with the local pharmaceutical and biotech market. 

“Pharmaceutical-grade CBD is in demand and we hope making our extractions available ‘down under’ gives Australian manufacturers a cost-effective and efficient way into the growing cannabidiol industry.

“We hope having access to these ingredients motivates some enterprising groups to develop products that will eventually provide positive health outcomes for patients, not only in Australia, but across the world.”

Prior to launching Cannabiz, Martin was co-founder and CEO of Asia-Pac’s leading B2B media and marketing information brand Mumbrella, overseeing its sale to Diversified Communications in 2017. A journalist...