In 2021, hopes were high in the cannabis industry. There were high possibilities that the highly anticipated cannabis reforms would become a reality. More states were rapidly legalizing cannabis. There was strong support from the public, especially on medical marijuana. Many stakeholders had every reason to believe it was the year of the federal decriminalization of cannabis. Unfortunately, too many challenges didn’t favor the process.
Since 2022 began, there have been renewed hopes. The hopes are higher compared to 2021. The bills introduced in 2021 are now in the discussion phase. There are two key federal legalization proposals. The supreme court has advised Congress to address the issue. Many expect that 2022 could be the year of marijuana pharmaceuticals.
Big interest from the big pharma
Reports from many years of research have revealed the huge benefits of medical marijuana. The reports haven’t been ignored by the big pharmaceutical companies, commonly referred to as the big pharma. For many years, the companies have been keenly watching from a distance.
It is not surprising that suddenly, big pharma has taken a keen interest in the cannabis industry. They have taken bold steps and begun to sign partnerships. Some have started to sponsor clinical trials. Those that have had positive outcomes have registered patents. Big pharma is transitioning fast from side watchers to giant marijuana pharmaceutical companies. A closer look into the investments involved and registered cannabinoid clinical trials reveals it all.
GW pharmaceutical Limited has registered over 40 trials. It is set for acquisition by Jazz Pharmaceuticals for $7.2 billion. Top of the list in terms of revenue is Johnson and Johnson. With more than $374 billion, the company is all set to take a huge share of the medical marijuana market. Through Avicenna Pharmaceutical Company, Johnson and Johnson is already pushing focus on commercializing medical marijuana.
Another major player is AbbVie which is commonly known as Abbott Labs. This is the company that produces and sells Marginal, the anti-nausea drug. The company has so far patented fifty-nine cannabis-related patents in the USA. This is the highest number of patent registrations compared to any other pharmaceutical company in the US.
This pharmaceutical companies’ marijuana trend in the US and other parts of the world is not likely to change any time soon. By the look of things, the rush will create a stronger race. Another key company in the race is Teva which supplies generic drugs in the US. Pfizer has taken a keen interest as well as AstraZeneca, Tetra Bio-Pharma, Sanofi, GlaxoSmithKline, and MERCK.
More states could legalize marijuana in 2022
The general attitudes about marijuana are changing in most states. There is huge support from the public. The lawmakers have been softening their stand over the years. Marijuana bills that never saw the light of the day before are back in most states.
In 2021, 39 states plus Washington DC had passed and signed laws legalizing medical marijuana. The states of Iowa, Georgia, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Kentucky have legalized the medical use of CBD oil only.
The list of states that could legalize marijuana in 2022 keeps growing. This is the legalization of both medical and recreational marijuana. At the top of the list is Arkansas. Currently, three campaigns are pushing hard for voters to have their say and legalize cannabis in the state. The first initiative was filed in November 2021. The key advocacy leaders are Democrat Eddie Armstrong. He is chairing a group called Responsible Growth Arkansas.
Mississippi is another key state that could legalize medical marijuana in 2022. Last year, the state did everything needed to legalize medical marijuana packaging. Unfortunately, the state’s supreme court overturned the victory.
Against all efforts by voters, only three judges were in support, while six declared the process unconstitutional. They cited issues in the signature collection process. The push for legalization is back, and Mississippi citizens can only hope that they will prevail this time around.
Another key state that could pass medical marijuana is Nebraska. The state’s voters overwhelmingly voted for legalization in 2020. The law prevailed against them after the state’s supreme court overturned the victory because the voting process was not procedural. Another process for collecting signatures started in September. 2021. The state is ready for the July 2022 ballot.
Impressive medical marijuana growth forecast
As new players join the cannabis market in the US, the current growth trend is not expected to slow down. The marijuana pharmaceutical companies will continue to record high growth. Projections show that the cannabis market will grow beyond $30 billion by the close of 2022. This is according to projections made by an analytics firm based in Seattle.
These projections are dependent on medical legalization by more states in 2022. The recreational marijuana field will significantly contribute to this growth too. It is important to note that some of the players will open their business only for a few months before 2022 closes. One of the eagerly awaited markets is the huge recreational market in New York. As more states open the market, the projected growth rate margin could hit 29.3% in 2022.
The dominant product for 2022 will be the flower. Flower sales will contribute about 47% of earnings which could jump from $10.9 billion in 2021 to $14.1 billion in 2022. Medical marijuana use is generally accepted widely around the world.
Globally, the medical cannabis market is expected to grow to $16.47 billion. Experts predicted the market will grow to $46.18 billion by 2027. Medical marijuana includes the entire cannabis plant extract, unprocessed extract, and crude extract.
Most marijuana pharmaceuticals are involved in the growth, harvesting, and extraction of medical marijuana products. Many of them sponsor growers so that they grow the plants with the most hygienic methods.
The main market drivers in the USA and the rest of the world are research, growing demand, increased diagnosis of chronic diseases, and revenue growth. The previous and ongoing clinical trials have proved fruitful. Marijuana pharmaceutical companies have been investing heavily into the cannabis market to create new paths for revenue growth and development of better products.