The recent legalization of medical cannabis and its removal from the list of controlled substances in Thailand are still fresh in memory. Recreational marijuana has become a common sight in major cities like Bangkok and Pattaya. With the legalization, Thailand has positioned itself at the forefront of medical cannabis use in Asia. In this discussion, we will delve deeper into the situation of medical cannabis in Thailand.
Current Status of the Medical Cannabis Market in Thailand
Thailand made headlines when it became the first ASEAN country to legalize cannabis in 2017. Initially, its use was limited to research purposes, and cultivation was restricted to government agencies. In 2019, medical use was permitted, and in 2021, processing of hemp and CBD for commercial purposes was also allowed.
The medical cannabis market in Thailand has been steadily growing, and as of 2022, the medical cannabis market size reached US$ 122.1 million.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommended removing CBD, which has low levels of the psychoactive component THC, from the list of most dangerous drug classifications defined by international treaties. This is believed to have contributed to the increasing demand for pharmaceuticals primarily based on CBD.
Future Growth of the Medical Cannabis Market
The medical cannabis market in Thailand is expected to experience a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 50% between 2023 and 2028.
Since the legalization of cannabis in Thailand, various industries have been incorporating cannabis components into products such as tea, soap, and toothpaste. The growing interest in the cannabis industry can be attributed to the increase in FDA-approved products, rising investments in the cannabis sector, and the development of a legal framework.
The cannabis sector can be broadly divided into the flower part and oils & tinctures. Oils & tinctures are widely used in the medical field, and research in this area is progressing.
With the expansion of research and an increase in FDA-approved products, it is anticipated that there will be further investments from major corporations and investors in the cannabis industry.
The current status and future growth of Thailand’s medical cannabis market have been presented. As of 2022, the market size had reached US$ 122.1 million, and it is expected to continue growing from 2023 onwards. The legal cannabis market is likely to expand further in the future.