Weed Week: Good news from the TGA, but Australia’s CBD industry still lags the global pack
Health & Biotech
Health & Biotech
It’s been a solid week for local cannabis stocks, in the wake of last Thursday’s ruling on domestic CBD sales by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).
The preliminary ruling clears a path for over-the-counter (OTC) sales of low-dose CBD products at the pharmacy, which marks a step up in distribution from the existing prescription pathway.
However, a research paper from the University of Sydney suggests regulators have taken pains to enforce the ‘low’ in low-dose — to the possible detriment of cannabis patients.
The 60 milligrams per day limit is well below that of global standards, where doses typically range from 300mg to 1500mg.
The insights form part of analysis carried out by the University’s Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics, which was founded with a $33.7m donation in 2017 from Ecofibre (ASX:EOF) chairman Barry Lambert.
The report also highlighted that Australia lags the pack on CBD distribution compared to other advanced economies including the US, UK and much of Europe, where CBD products are already stocked on the shelves.
However, regulators in all jurisdictions are still grappling with the finer details around how CBD products should be classified, and also what levels of the psychoactive THC component can be included in OTC products.
Despite those uncertainties, a number of ASX-listed cannabis companies rode a brief wave of positive momentum in the wake of last week’s ruling.
The positive sentiment saw 16 companies post a fortnightly gain, while 14 stocks still lost ground and four were unchanged.
Below is a summary of fortnightly and annual price performance for ASX-listed cannabis stocks:
Scroll or swipe to reveal table. Click headings to sort.
The price increase for most stocks over the past two weeks can be largely attributed to a sharp bounce on Wednesday September 9, the day the TGA’s ruling came out.
Gains were led by the cannabis-adjacent airway technology company Rhinomed (ASX:RNO), which is also developing delivery applications for medicinal cannabis products.
The stock ripped higher on Tuesday after RNO announced it had built a less-invasive nasal swab, that can be used for self-detection of flu or strains of coronavirus.