Mexico will soon join Canada and Uruguay and become the third country to legalize cannabis fully. If it takes this step, the country’s size will make Mexico the largest marijuana market in the entire world.
This Latin American country made a significant step on January 12, 2021, when its health ministry published rules regulating medical marijuana use.
Mexico’s President, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, signed off this new regulation that allows pharmaceutical companies to start conducting medical research on marijuana products.
But, what does Mexico legalizing cannabis mean for the US? Worry no more! Keep reading this enlightening post to get all the answers to your questions.
Activities Authorized Under Mexico’s Medical Marijuana Rules
Mexico created the medical marijuana rules with the primary objective of authorizing, regulating, controlling, promoting, and overseeing both the therapeutic use and medical use of pharmaceutical drugs, pharmaceutical derivatives, and marijuana’s raw materials.
The activities considered under these cannabis rules include:
Importing/Exporting Cannabis Products
The medical marijuana rules restrict the marijuana products or items you can import into Mexico for therapeutic/medical use. It allows the importation of only drugs, pharmaceutical derivatives, and raw materials.
For the export case, the rules allow exportation only for cannabis drugs and pharmaceutical derivatives. You should register the cannabis drugs or related products with COFEPRIS if you plan to export or import them for sale purposes. Moreover, all import/export cases need a permit.
The medical marijuana rules allow pharmaceutical or manufacturing facilities manufacturing pharmaceutical derivatives, marijuana raw materials, or drugs to commercialize these products only to centers that have received the corresponding permit from COFEPRIS.
Examples of these facilities include drugstores, storage facilities, and distribution facilities. Also, the facilities need to commercialize only the cannabis products registered with COFEPRIS.
The rules allow manufacturing facilities to obtain the necessary license before manufacturing drugs, pharmaceutical derivatives, and cannabis raw materials. Also, these rules require the manufacturing facilities to adhere to acceptable manufacturing standards.
COFEPRIS can visit the manufacturers at any time. And the rules don’t allow cannabis drug manufacturing in courtesy presentations or medical samples.
As per these medical rules, drugstores, storage facilities, distribution facilities, and manufacturing facilities can only sell/manufacture cannabis products or drugs registered with COFEPRIS.
As per the medical marijuana rules, it’s only a duly medical individual who can give a cannabis drug prescription. This medical individual should get barcodes for medical prescription formats so that they can prescribe marijuana drugs.
Besides this, the rule requires the drugstores to record each patient consuming cannabis drugs.
Cannabis Growing And Production
Any party interested in cannabis growing and production should obtain a permit from SENASICA. However, these parties should follow the required research protocol and grow or produce only cannabis products, pharmaceutical derivatives, or drugs allowed by COFEPRIS.
With the permit, interested parties can seed, grow and harvest cannabis they need to conduct medical research or produce pharmaceutical derivatives and drugs.
Besides this, cannabis production for therapeutic use or medical purpose should only occur in areas allowed by authorities.
What Mexico Legalizing Cannabis Means For The US
Legalizing cannabis means Mexico will set aside acres of land for marijuana farming – a step that can threaten the United States job market. This move will make it challenging for the US agricultural industry to get new cash crops.
As per Morgan Fox, the NCIA’s spokesperson, US lawmakers should focus more on Mexican marijuana legalization. With this legalization, it means the global market will surpass the United States in the policy. Besides this, marijuana legalization in Mexico will make it hard for US companies to take a part.
Non-US businesses are likely to dominate if the global marijuana market grows without involving the United States. As per Jordan Lewis, marijuana legalization in Mexico will force United States lawmakers to put national cannabis legalization to the discussion table.
Gary Hale argues that US consumers and companies should prepare for trade issues/disputes experienced with other products from Mexico if the two countries decide to legalize cannabis nationally.
US consumers and companies can expect marijuana disputes similar to that of the tomato war where Mexican dumped tomatoes in the United States.
The absence of growing seasons means the Mexican farmers can plant cannabis any time, even seven times per year.
Why Mexico Marijuana Legalization Is Unique
Mexico marijuana legalization is a unique move because of the size it involves. Mexico has a population of 140 million, almost four times the 37 million people in Canada. On the other hand, Uruguay, another country with fully legalized marijuana, has a population of 3.5 million.
Therefore, the 140 million people explain why Mexico will lead the legal marijuana market in entire North America. This move means the Mexican companies will stand in a better position to expand their marijuana business everywhere.
These businesses will have productive skills in the supply chain, meeting the increasing consumer base demands, scaling, and more best practices.
If the United States legalizes marijuana fully, it’s the top-rated cannabis companies in Mexico that will have a significant impact on the United States market, too. The companies’ success in Mexico is what will drive them in the United States.