The Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development has estimated that the cannabis industry is worth R28 billion in South Africa.
According to BusinessTech, the cannabis industry could create between 10 000 – 25 000 jobs across the sector. The department presented its ‘cannabis master plan’ to parliament this week, explaining in detail how marijuana could be incorporated into SA’s business sector as part of the government’s ongoing drive towards legalisation and commercialisation.
“Establishment of the cannabis industry will lead to diversification of the economy and thus increase economic growth, create jobs and for poverty alleviation,” it said.
“The cannabis sector also has huge potential in terms of the development of SMMEs, attracting domestic and foreign investment and value additions in processing and manufacturing of various products for local and export markets.”
Before the value of SA’s cannabis industry can move forward, the department said the government needs to address issues that include regulations, distribution of seeds, and education initiatives, reports News Knowledia.
Effective regulatory systems will focus on developing a new regulatory frame-work for hemp and dagga.
“This might include amendment of existing legislation by removing constraints that are hindering commercialisation,” the department said.
Sustainable seed supply systems will focus on the production, processing, packaging and trade of seed and related products.
Some key proposals includes:
Compulsory registration – all companies and organisations involved in breeding, multiplication and sale of cannabis seed must be registered and have valid permits.
Certification schemes – all cannabis seed producers, packers and other role players will need to be included in a compulsory certification scheme.
Import and export control systems and protocols for cannabis seed are to be developed and implemented.