New Zealand has become one of the only countries in the world to legalize drugs made from Cannabidiol (CBD). The government of New Zealand recently made CBD products legal on a prescription basis.

Authorities recently eased laws related to medical cannabis. Elixinol Global’s (ASX: EXL) CBD products are already being sold in New Zealand via its online shop. The company also announced its first shipment of CBD products to New Zealand.

The approval of CBD products in New Zealand came after lawmakers in the country passed the Misuse of Drugs (medicinal cannabis) Amendment Act in December 2018. As per the law, CBD products that contain low levels of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) can be used as prescription medicines. Researchers have discovered that CBD has numerous medicinal benefits and can bring relief to people suffering from a wide range of diseases. It is important to note that unlike THC, CBD does not get you ‘high.’

The government of New Zealand had made cannabis Sativa illegal in all forms. However, under the new law, hemp derived products such as CBD are now legal and can be bought in the country.

Paul Benhaim, the founder, and chief executive of Elixinol, welcomed the changes in the law. He also said his company is capable of catering to the rising demand for CBD-based products in New Zealand.

“New Zealand has become very progressive in its laws surrounding hemp-derived CBD. It’s a very exciting time for the New Zealand public and for Elixinol,” Benhaim said.”We are delighted to be one of the first companies to supply New Zealand patients with the range our US customers have been benefiting from for years.”

“We have a distributor excited to sell our products in New Zealand,”
Benhaim added. “We had been preparing for the increased demand all of last year by ensuring a strong supply chain of raw materials through joint venture partners as well as sourcing from the largest hemp growers in Colorado, US.”

Elixinol sells a wide range of products derived from industrial hemp. The company has CBD-based dietary supplements and other products made from hemp seeds. Elixinol also sells its products in Australia.

The hemp industry is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. Reports indicate that the hemp industry could be worth billions in a few years. Currently, the industry makes about 500 millions dollars yearly.

More studies are needed to validate claims that CBD and other hemp derived products have medical benefits. The whole plant can be used for different industries that range from clothing to medicines.

New Zealand is not the only country looking to take advantage of hemp and products made from it. In 2018, lawmakers in the United States passed the Farm Bill which made it legal for farmers to grow industrial hemp. The law also removes hemp from the list of Schedule 1 drugs.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Epidiolex, a CBD drug meant for curing epilepsy in children.