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The Cannabis Industry is Growing

As we look to the future of cannabis and its place in society, both socially, medicinally and as a natural, eco-conscious ingredient, we can expect more flexibility when considering its use and growth within the commercial cannabis industry in South Africa. This is such a great step forward towards a more hemp-forward world.

Changes to legislation in South Africa

2018: The recreational use of cannabis in the private spaces was legalised through a Supreme Court of Appeal judgment.

2020: a Bill was tabled in Parliament to legalise the use of cannabis for private purposes, allowing individuals to grow a limited amount and use cannabis in private dwellings.

2021: The department of agriculture values the industry at a potential R28-billion a year.

2022: Proposed amendments to the Cannabis for Private Purposes bill are out forward, allowing for the creation of a commercial recreational cannabis industry.

The committee hopes to pass the bill in parliament by the end of this term in April, after which it will go to the National Council of Provinces. It will also likely have to go for a second round of public hearings, because the amendments were introduced after the public consultation process had been completed.

President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that the government was ready to push ahead with legalising and regulating the commercial cannabis industry, which he said could create 130 000 much-needed jobs.

While the primary focus will be on the private use of cannabis, the portfolio committee has extended the subject of the bill to:

  • Provide for commercial activities in respect of recreational cannabis;
  • Provide for the cultivation, possession and supply of cannabis plants and cannabis by organisations for religious and cultural purposes on behalf of their members; and
  • Respect the right to privacy of an adult person to use cannabis for palliation or medication.


The Cannabis Industry Potential

We look to industry leader, Silas Howarth, director of the Cannabis Expo Cape Town, who confirms the industry has grown dramatically since 2018, and even continued to expand throughout the pandemic.

“People who come to the Cannabis Expo are generally blown away at how big the industry is,” said Howarth.

International companies are showing great interest in cannabis business in Africa and if the regulators step up and make sure consumers and customers are protected, it could grow exponentially.

The Right People are Investing

There are true complexities surrounding the cannabis industry, with its landscape covering cannabis and hemp for medicinal use, cosmetics, food and beverage, as well as industrial use. To help investment reach the right places, tech-forward cooperative FORUS has initiated one of the first sector-wide funding initiatives as they enter into digital banking service provision for investor-customers. Collaborating with the largest cultivator of medical cannabis in Africa, a company who competes internationally based on their quality cannabis available at highly competitive prices. How do they achieve this? By leveraging the talent of the South African people and our countries natural resources, all sustainably and as part of a growing community.