A report by Research and Markets has found the international medical cannabis market could be worth over $40 billion by 2028, Yahoo News reports. Up from $11.7 billion in 2021, the growth represents a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19% from 2022 to 2028.
The report says the approval of more medical cannabis products and increased acceptance of cannabis as a medicine will contribute to the growth. However, it notes the use of cannabis as a “street drug” and that continued misconceptions surrounding cannabis could hinder the market.
The World Health Organization (WHO) says about 80% of the world’s population utilizes cannabis or hemp as a medical treatment. Consequently, the increase in medical cannabis acceptance, production, and use in developing countries is a major factor in the market’s expansion, the report notes.
Divided into dry plant material and extracts, the paper found extracts will have a slightly higher CAGR, 19.3%, over the measurement period due to higher demand for liquid extracts for “medical applications, increasing health and wellness trends with the consumption of natural health products, and rising awareness regarding the benefits of extracts over dried cannabis.” Additionally, segmented into treatments for pain management, Tourette, Alzheimer’s disease, migraines, depression and anxiety, multiple sclerosis, cancer, and other categories, the medical cannabis application that will see the largest growth from 2022 to 2028 was multiple sclerosis at 20.3% CAGR, Markets and Research found.
The report also suggests that demand for natural foods during the COVID-19 crisis drove an increase in hemp food consumption. The report points to countries like Australia and New Zealand, which produce hemp products for the food and beverage sector; Japan, which allows CBD in food products like sweet drinks and lasagna; and China and India, which have yet to approve CBD food products; as indicators that the increased sale of cannabis and hemp will propel the market during the assessment period.
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