The newly formed Cannabis Industry Council (CIC) is to hold its first face-to-face meeting on Wednesday 7 July 2021 in London. Nearly 100 organisations have signed up to be part of the collective which aims to advance medical cannabis and hemp CBD in the UK.
In a statement, the council has set out its aspirations: “CIC will provide a single voice for the industry as well as a trusted and open gateway to those wishing to access the sector via [our] website. Together, as an open and inclusive organisation, we will have the opportunity to influence, learn from and network with fellow medical cannabis businesses and organisations.
“We would like to see every sector in this industry represented as part of the council.”
CIC acknowledges that members may not fully agree with one another: “No matter—we all want a vibrant, high quality, patient-centric UK sector.”
The interim chair of the council is Professor Mike Barnes, one of the authors of the discussion paper, UK Medical Cannabis & CBD Market, published by medical cannabis strategists Maple Tree Consultants and London law firm Mackrell Solicitors. Mike is a neurologist and rehabilitation physician, the honorary professor of neurological rehabilitation at the University of Newcastle, and a former president of national and international medical societies. He was involved in the development of the first cannabis medicine, Sativex.
The founding of CIC was originally proposed by members of the executive committee of the Medical Cannabis Clinicians Society, but the new grouping will be shaped by its members. Some are already working together on areas of common interest including standards, hemp, environmental and social responsibility, research and lobbying. CIC is seeking members among high-THC licensed producers (importers and UK-based companies which are striving for a cultivation licence), hemp CBD bodies that represent the industry, patient groups, cannabis clinics (existing and aspiring), dispensaries and importers, professional bodies, education providers, charities and research groups, infrastructure bodies, lawyers and insurers, regulators, and senior government and NHS representatives.
Members listed on CIC’s website are Alta Flora, Althea, Alto Verde, APPG on Drug Policy Reform, British Hemp Alliance, CanCard, Cannabis Trades Association, Drug Science, Eaststones, Grow Biotech, Khiron, Little Green Pharma, Lyphe Group, Mackrells Solicitors, MG Health, PLEA, Sativa Learning, Towergate Insurance and Unyte.
Membership is by donation: “We suggest a voluntary contribution for those organisations that can afford it. We want to be inclusive, with representation from every part of the sector. Lack of finances should not prevent membership.”