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Open Call For French Medical Cannabis Suppliers

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The French government is officially looking for suppliers for its medical cannabis trial. Applications are due by November 24. Applicants may also submit questions until November 18.

What The French Are Looking For

The government is looking for GMP certified providers who can provide up to 3,000 French patients with different qualities of both raw and extracted products for free during the duration of the trial.

This includes not only the provision of the medicine itself but all costs related to import and distribution. It also includes, for floß cannabis, the requirement that the supplier provides a vaping device (per patient).

How Does This Differ From The German Bid?

The French appear to be looking for a larger cannabis producer who can bear the cost of not only medicine provision and distribution, but also of import (required) and additional equipment (vapes).

There are few companies that are in a position to meet this challenge – not only from a quality perspective, but also from a cost perspective. Even the biggest companies right now are suffering from cash flow issues.

And even though the German bid required that cannabis companies spend a great deal of money to apply for a bid that was delayed twice by legal challenges, they could at least create revenue for themselves by selling the drug in the country in the meantime.

France is indeed challenging the industry to step up – and like the German government before it only looking for “established” companies.

The question is, outside a big French pharma right now, who is willing to step into this role?

How Does This Differ From Other Countries Steps Into Legalization?

The French foray into medical acceptance actually appears to be unique. No other country has launched a national trial like this to begin its foray into normalization.

It is also clear that the French are determined to push the onus back onto the industry itself to help prove its efficacy – and further do so in a way that may help build “infrastructure” in the form of creating a distribution network with an established French company – but no more.

This is not a bienvenue, but rather a révolution à contrecœur (reluctant change of heart).

The Upside

Clearly, the focus from the beginning in France is a GMP only market where the government is not on the hook for paying for the cost of the trial – and further that any cannabis company outside the country willing to engage in the same must have either a standing or in process partnership negotiated with a French pharmaceutical company capable of fulfilling the technical requirements of narcotic distribution within France.

For the latest on the changing market picture in Europe, be sure to attend the International Cannabis Business Conference when it returns to the continent next year.