Two companies that plan a huge cannabis-growing and research facility in Australia have applied for licenses to run the operations, whose products could benefit multiple sclerosis patients.
The applications come at a time when medical cannabis use is increasing. Studies worldwide have shown that it can alleviate symptoms of a number of diseases. The benefits that cannabis-based therapies offer multiple sclerosis patients include less pain, less muscle stiffness and less urgency to urinate.
Approval of the applications will pave the way for PUF Ventures, PUF Ventures Australia and MYM Nutraceuticals to create the Northern Rivers Project in the province of New South Wales.
It will include a 1.2-million-square-foot greenhouse to grow cannabis, a 10,000-square-foot laboratory, other research facilities and a training center. Its medical cannabis and other products will be aimed at the Australian market. The first crop is expected to be planted at the end of 2018.
MYM Nutraceuticals and PUF Ventures Australia collaborated with the National Institute of Complementary Medicine on the applications.
It is “a world-class research institute, and this collaboration will allow for access to our planned state-of-the-art labs and greenhouse facilities,” Michael Horsfall, the chief executive officer of PUF Ventures Australia, said in a press release.
The institute’s academic expertise will contribute to the Northern Rivers Project’s research agenda, Horsfall said. “This is a significant step forward to allow PVA [PUF Ventures Australia] to focus on its mandate to develop innovative medicinal products,” he said.
Northern Rivers’ partners are still discussing what kinds of projects to pursue. In addition to MS, the possibilities include therapies for women’s health disorders and immune disorders.
“There is a growing appetite globally for clean-green, high-quality medicinal plants,” said Jerome Sarris, the deputy director