Lobbyists are gearing up to promote the psychoactive cannabinoid as the government considers new regulation, reports CBD-Intel
The Argentine hemp industry is hopeful that sales of delta-8 THC hemp products will be formally permitted under the country’s new legal framework for cannabinoids.
Officials are preparing the rules for cannabis and hemp following the ratification of the Medicinal Cannabis and Industrial Hemp Law by president Alberto Fernández.
There is currently no set date for the presentation of the framework that will accompany the new law. The government has 180 days from the date of publication in the Official Gazette, which took place on 26th May, to issue a regulation – that is, until 22nd November. Meanwhile both Argentine vendors and international suppliers are hopeful that sales of delta-8 will be permitted.
“We are in talks with members of the industry and government in hopes that delta-8 is introduced and permitted in Argentina,” said Leandro Ayala, president of the Argentina Cannabis Confederation and owner of Distribuidora 1422, a Buenos Aires-based supplier of materials for tobacco and cannabis consumption to local smoke and head shops. “What we are wanting to do with delta-8 is facilitate the registration of corresponding products so that we can begin a process to sell them.”
Distribuidora 1422 ran a listing on its website for a delta-8 product produced by Florida-based Sun State Hemp, in what the company termed a promotional tactic. Ayala said it was done to gauge consumer interest but that not so much as a gift box of the products had been sent through as delta-8 sales remained in a grey area legally.
“The idea is that it will be allowed within the margins of the Argentina legal framework and that its consumption would be legal,” Ayala told CBD-Intel. “We now have a law, but we still don’t have set regulation.”
As government entities, led by the recently created Medicinal Cannabis and Hemp Industry Regulatory Agency (ARICCAME), prepare the legal framework that will govern the industry, the Argentina Cannabis Confederation and members of the small-to-medium size business chamber are organising an event with state authorities to lobby for the legalisation of delta-8.
“Given that the rules of the game are still undefined, we are hoping to have delta-8 included in the legal framework and are pushing to advance it as a business and economic opportunity,” Ayala said.
Sun State Hemp, which manufactures and distributes CBD and delta-8 products to both wholesale and retail, is hopeful of becoming a supplier to Distribuidora 1422, which has operated in Argentina since 2002. However, “nothing is yet concrete”, Sun State’s international sales manager Juan José Manriquez told CBD-Intel.
“We’re hoping to receive a positive response from the Argentine government,” Manriquez said. “We’re currently just in a project stage.”
Argentina’s Health Ministry did not respond to requests for comment, and nor did the office of congresswoman Carolina Gaillard, who pushed for approval of the Medicinal Cannabis and Industrial Hemp Law and has discussed the idea of a bill to legalise recreational cannabis in the country.
President Fernandez believes the new law will create 10,000 jobs and generate $500m in sales in the next ten years. It allows for scientific investigation of the cannabis plant and its derivatives, and will create regulation to govern the productive development of cannabis and hemp in Argentina.
“This is the inauguration of a new industry in Argentina, the national cannabis industry for medicinal use and hemp for industrial use,” said Matías Kulfas, Argentina’s minister for productive development. “We are going to have an adequate framework to be able to produce quality in large scale.”
He and the government are optimistic that new industry will bring welcome economic development to different regions of Argentina. Many in the hemp industry hope delta-8 products can play a role in that.
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