Italy is turning to its military to help make its legal medical marijuana program self-sufficient.
defense news report The Italian military will provide “700 kilograms (1,543 pounds) to cover almost half of the country’s annual need of 1,500 kilograms (3,307 pounds) for people in need of pain relief, such as cancer patients. ) to produce the finest cannabis for ‘Parkinson’s disease. ”
“The next step is self-sufficiency. That is our ambition,” said Nicola Latorre, who heads the Italian agency that oversees operations. Said defense news.
According to the outlet Italy imports cannabis not grown by the military from the Netherlands, Canada, Denmark and Germany, but the military is “fortifying a seemingly anonymous military facility on the edge of Florence”.
defense news I will explain The facility near Florence opened in 2014 and says, “After managing 50 kilograms in 2020, it has increased to 300 kilograms in 2022.”
To reach the target of around £1,500 by 2023, “technicians perfected the lighting, watering, temperature and ventilation, and used a secret nutrient blend developed in-house mixed into hydroponic irrigation. doing.”
The Italian military’s role in medical cannabis production is nothing new.
The country announced in 2014 that “the Army will help increase production of medical marijuana at the first safe growing facility unveiled in Florence in April 2015.” according to Independent.
Independent Reported in 2016 That the country’s armed forces “began to grow cannabis in large quantities in order to bring the price of cannabis down to about 8 euros per gram.”
“A sterile room is desired [in Florence] It produces up to 100kg of cannabis each year for use by cancer patients, multiple sclerosis patients and people with other medical conditions that may be relieved by this drug. ” Independent report At the time.
Colonel Antonio Medica, who oversaw cannabis production by the Italian army, Said “The army was entrusted with this task because of its high security guarantees and because it had been involved in pharmaceutical affairs since the 1800s, providing medicine and medical care to wounded soldiers.”
Italy legalized medical cannabis almost a decade ago, but has long relied on cannabis imports to meet domestic demand.
Colonel Gabriele Piccioni, who oversees a cannabis facility in Florence for the Italian army, said: Said defense news The lab “aims to produce a cannabis-infused olive oil that users can consume in drop form”.
“What we can do in Florence is produce a highly standardized product, so the dosage is constant, at the same price we are paying for imports today,” Picchioni said.
Here are some reasons to leave cannabis production to the country’s military: bi-fold: “To produce cannabis in secure facilities, and because the military has been in the pharmaceutical industry for decades, has created chemical warfare antidotes and malaria pills for soldiers.”
The Army also manufactures “so-called orphan drugs, drugs for rare diseases and conditions that large companies ignore because of their low production rates,” and has “manufactured four such drugs to supply 3,000 people in Italy.” manufacture”.
“As cannabis production increased, the Army registered two types of harvested marijuana as brands: FM1 and FM2, which stands for ‘Farmaceutico Militare’ (or ‘military medicine’ in English). Each contains different levels of tetrahydrocannabinol, the compound that gives the pot a high. ” defense news Said.