Malawi Ready for Launch of Hemp Cultivation as Tobacco Revenue Crumbles
- Southeastern Africa country Malawi is reportedly ready to launch the cultivation of cannabis.
- The country decriminalized cannabis in February of this year, but has been feeling a sense of urgency to get its production up and running ever since their tobacco revenue took a massive hit.
- Lower demand and bad weather have caused this revenue decline, and Malwai hopes cannabis can help create new economic growth.
In today’s world, it’s hard to imagine tobacco declining in popularity. Being a known staple commodity across the world since the 1400’s, you would never guess that its popularity would one day begin to dwindle.
But this is exactly what’s happening in Malawi, and high-ranking officials in their agriculture ministry are prepared to launch hemp cultivation to help combat the loss of revenue.
Boniface Kadzamira, Malawi’s board chair of the Cannabis Regulatory Authority, stated that over 100 applications have already been received for licensing.
“Our view as regulator is that if we get honest investors, the hemp industry can supplement export revenues from tobacco, and in some cases, surpass it,” Kadzamira said. However, Kadzamira also acknowledges that cannabis “will not immediately replace tobacco.”
According to reports, the decline in tobacco demand is also accompanied by a factor outside of anyone’s control: Poor weather.
2020, which has brought gifts for all, brought with it poor weather during Malawi’s growing season. This resulted in an overall output decline of 31.3%, leading to a 26.4% decline in the country’s tobacco revenues. Luckily, Malawi decriminalized cannabis for medicinal and industrial use back in February.
This bill includes both hemp and marijuana, and the country is reportedly ready to launch commercial production. According to the agriculture ministry, the licensing fees will range from $100 to $10,000 per year depending on the license type. The types include:
Once Malawi has both hemp and marijuana production running full speed, you can expect plenty of extra revenue to come streaming in. THC edibles, smokables, and CBD products are all popular in areas that they can be sold.