The Maejo University in Chiang Mai, as the first University in Thailand, embarks on the ambitious task to create a national cannabis strain. It shall be a symbolic success for the country in which medical cannabis is legal in Thailand since March 2019. Symbolic, the name of the strain shall also be Issara 01- meaning as much as independence. The genetics shall lead to an equal amount of THC and CBD within the plant. Since only the medical use of cannabis is legal, the products of the plant will be used to treat patients, showing one of the most severe illnesses.
The University made a name to its self for constructing an operating the biggest cannabis facility in the ASEAN region. Since August, are cultivating over 12.000 cannabis sprouts on a 3.050sqm. The Health Minister of Thailand Anutin Charnvirakul , personally attended the opening ceremony. Further, he expects the unity to supply for 1 million 5ml bottles of cannabis oil by February. Hence, the University plans to yield more than 2.4 tons of dried cannabis flowers by then.
Thailands Standards are rising
In October, a team of researchers by Cannabis Catalysts, has visited the facility and spoken to the chief researcher. For the University team, the greatest challenge is to get their employees educated to prepare for the botanical tasks at hand. Access to seeds is only partly possible at the moment, since a fully functioning framework, has not yet been developed. Unfortunately, the countries cannabis sector did not catch up to the international operating standards by now but sure is on the way.
Catching up to the international industry
This can be seen for example in the rising activities, in educational as well as operational terms. Besides, a number of cannabis conventions are organized, the recent example is the convention by Elevated Estate. Moreover, Srinakharinwirot University introduced the first curriculum on medical cannabis, which will educate the growers to come. Research is operating at full steam launching the first study to determine cannabis’ effect on cancer. The National Cancer Institute will conduct fundamental research on this topic. They are working with 140 cancer patients, further 30.00 patients have applied for the program. Obviously, there is a strong demand for medication from patients and consumers which creates a dynamic setting in Thailand. Various sources, like WHO and Highland Research estimate between 800.000 – 1.2 million patients in the medical market. (Excludes recreational market)