Thursday 1 June 2023

Costa Rica issued first license for medical cannabis cultivation

The company Azul Wellness S.A. will develop the cannabis cultivation and processing project in Guanacaste

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QCOSTARICA – As part of the celebration of Día del Agricultor (Farmer’s Day) this May 15, the government of Costa Rica issued the first license for the use of psychoactive cannabis, that is, that used for medicinal purposes.

Azul Wellness S.A., authorized by the MAG, will develop the cannabis cultivation and processing project in an 800 m² greenhouse area located in Filadelfia, Guanacaste. Photo: Courtesy

The resolution was signed by the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG), Víctor Carvajal, in response to a request made by Azul Wellness S.A., which will develop the cannabis cultivation and processing project in an 800-square-meter greenhouse area in Filadelfia, Guanacaste.

Read more: Experts will analyze international hemp and cannabis markets, the challenges and opportunities for Costa Rica

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Similarly, two applications for the planting and processing of hemp and a license for medical cannabis are in the evaluation process.

The Law on cannabis for medicinal and therapeutic use and on hemp for food and industrial use was signed on March 2, 2022, by then-President Carlos Alvarado.

The regulation for industrial hemp was signed by President Rodrigo Chaves on September 7, 2022, followed by the regulation for cannabis for medicinal use, on September 30.

To date, the MAG has authorized nine permits, eight for hemp and this license for psychoactive or medicinal cannabis.

The regulation of the Law defines non-psychoactive hemp or cannabis as the plant or part of the plant (whether in biomass or cultivation) including seeds, derivatives and extracts, whose THC (tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive component) content is lower than to 1% dry weight.

Meanwhile, it defines psychoactive cannabis with a THC content equal to or greater than 1% by dry weight.

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According to the current Law, the use and exploitation of cannabis for medical and therapeutic purposes is authorized “solely and exclusively” for planting, cultivation, harvesting, storage, transportation and distribution, as well as production and importation. seed of cannabis varieties for sale as raw material to the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS) or duly authorized laboratories or establishments.

The MAG reminds those  interested in growing hemp or cannabis, the procedures to manage the authorization for planting are carried out directly before the Dirección Nacional de Extensión Agropecuaria del MAG and are free.

Information can be found on the Hemp Regulation for Food and Industrial Use; Regulation of Cannabis for Medicinal and Therapeutic Use; User Guide for the Authorization of the Cultivation, Production and Related Activities of Hemp before the MAG; explanatory audiovisual material; steps and requirements for importing industrial hemp or psychoactive cannabis; forms for the request for planting authorization, as well as links of interest to institutions involved in the processon the MAG page,


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