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This will be the business opportunities of legal cannabis in Mexico

While analyzing the law to regulate cannabis, there is already a group of entrepreneurs ready to offer different products.

Guillermo Nieto is one of the Mexicans who managed to defend himself before the law for the production and self-consumption of cannabis, or hemp, the plant from which the marijuana grows. But Memo, who is also president of the National Association of the Cannabis Industry ( Anicann ), not only uses the crop for consumption, but also to do research. “I have between 10 and 15 plants and with them I am doing a genetic research protocol, together with the University of Nuevo Leon, to know which seed is the most suitable to plant and reproduce in Mexico,” he explains.

And for this entrepreneur, this is the first step for the legal industry in Mexico to really explode. ” Cannabis must be seen and analyzed first as an agricultural product; If you do not see it that way, you do not visualize the great advantages that the country has to produce it. And all good agriculture starts with a good seed. “

Guillermo Nieto, president of the National Association of the Cannabis Industry (Anicann).

An association to join them all

With the aim of giving not only voice but relevant information to the government and consumers, he and eight other cannabis entrepreneurs founded the Anicann last July. Today, the group has more than 200 members. On the one hand, Memo Nieto explains, the legislators are expected to create cannabis legislation that is commensurate with the size and geographical situation of the country. “Mexico has the three” w “necessary to produce the plant: water (water), weather (weather) and workers (workers). In addition, 80% of agricultural land is suitable for the production of this plant, “he says.

It is also necessary to consider that unlike other countries such as Canada (whose formal marijuana market has a value of 22,000 million dollars and generates 150,000 jobs a year) that has almost no months for sowing, “in Mexico we can have product all year without the high costs of heating or electricity, with skilled labor and up to three times more economical, which gives us a tremendous advantage as producers, “he explains. “We should put the batteries to export it once it is legal to plant it here, that is a great opportunity”.

In context, Olga Sánchez Cordero , Secretary of the Interior, has been in favor of the decriminalization of marijuana and poppy since before the new administration came to power; Even as Senator, she presented a bill on November 8, 2018 to regulate, among other things, its production, consumption and even commercialization.

The project highlights the creation of the Mexican Institute for Regulation and Control of Cannabis , which will be a decentralized body responsible for regulating, regulating, monitoring, sanctioning, and evaluating the cannabis regulation system. It also establishes schemes for self-consumption, scientific, commercial, therapeutic, industrial and pharmaceutical use.

This is excellent news for the members of the Anicann as Memo, who operates in Colorado, USA, the Love and Health company , dedicated to the legal planting of cannabidiol (CBD), a natural component found in cannabis that does not It contains psychotropics, that is, it does not produce hallucinations. “I bring the seed from outside, I germinate it and I harvest the CBD , and that molecule is what I sell to other manufacturing companies that in turn transform it and apply it to various products, such as food, beverages and granulated envelopes,” he explains.

The entrepreneur plants 200 annual acres of the plant. His goal: to learn the business well in the United States to replicate it in Mexico once it is legalized.

A kilo of CBD costs around $ 5,000 in the United States

The producers, key piece

Another of the main objectives of the Anicann, according to its president, is to help small farmers in the countryside in Mexico, including the poorest communities in the country, to generate a value chain where everyone wins and can change their level of life. “We have to get Mexico into 21st century agriculture,” he says.

And is that being in the hands of illegality, the activity is hidden in the mountains, far from technology, better seeds and more efficient fertilizers that help them improve their crops. “We want to return to those producers who already know and plant the plant, bring them to the law and give them the necessary tools and technology so that they have a quality product so that they buy from them and not from foreign producers,” he explains.

With this goal in mind, once Love and Health lands in Mexican territory, Memo will implement “contract farming”, a scheme with which it works on US soil. In this, the company gives the seeds and agrochemicals to the farmer and in exchange he puts the land, the tractor, the water and the supervision of the plantations, which lowers the costs while ensuring that the production standards are carried out desired.

Regarding the payment, Love and Health pacts a price from before the planting so that farmers know how much they will earn and the price of the product does not fluctuate. The intention of the entrepreneur is to do the same with Mexican producers.

Challenges to overcome

The initiative of Olga Sánchez Cordero is undoubtedly a step forward to legalize business activity around cannabis. However, it is only the first of many that must be taken to really see the boom that entrepreneurs want.

To say of Memo Nieto, the new administration is positively progressive and open to explore these opportunities, however, other agencies such as Sagarpa must get involved to put order, agility and regularize production so that Mexico becomes the “king of the legal cannabis. “

On the other hand, they will need agro-professionals who know the seed and the plant so they can take care of the thousands of hectares planted. Hence the research protocol carried out together with the University of Nuevo León, which in May will begin physical tests, as well as the possible creation of the Cannabicultor agronomist career , as an alternative for young people to have a much more profitable option undertake or dedicate to the field.

Consumers are another key element of the formula. “People should remove the taboo behind this plant and the way to do it is by giving them information about the difference between hemp, marijuana and cannabis , the benefits and the potential that the plant has as a medicinal use, in addition to recreational, for that the demand grows and the legal market “, indicates Javier Reza, director of the Anicann.

Nieto also emphasizes that what happened in the United States on November 28 is relevant for Mexico. That day the new hemp legislation was signed in that country, which transforms it from a banned substance to an agricultural commodity, which means that “anyone can produce hemp, CBD and transform it,” he explains. “All areas of opportunity are yet to be developed. That was day zero. “

Hence, 2019 is a crucial year not only for Mexico but for the United States as the world’s largest market is opening up to products related to the CBD. “Our zero day is coming. We believe that it will happen in the medium term, although we do not know when, it will surely be before this administration ends. “

Source: entrepreneur, bloomberg, economia hoy, la mota

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