Is it possible that the national cultivation of medical marijuana is a scam? We have been trying for some time to determine the authority of the Institute of Natural Fibers and Herbaceous Plants to produce medical marijuana. If the amendment proposals currently under way go into effect, it would be the IWNiRZ that would be in charge of producing the dried product for our market. Cannabis experts have been warning for months that the institute from Poznan has no competence in this matter and all it cares about is obtaining multi-million dollar grants for this purpose. Now it turns out that the institute is unable to give even an approximate price for the raw material it produces, and the director in charge of this production has said that the preliminary price will not be known until a year after the law comes into force at the earliest. And it is, after all, the price that is the basic argument for national crops. Here is more information.
Planned national cultivation of medical marijuana by the Institute of Natural Fibers and Herb Plants Is it a scam?
Medical marijuana has been available on our market since 2017. However, until today we have been importing it from Canada or Denmark. Many people are wrongly convinced that the fact of importing the raw material from abroad is the reason for its high price. To make matters worse, such claims can be heard, for example, from Left politicians, who in this way do more harm than good. Paulina Matysiak of the Left claims that more than half of the price of dried goods is the cost of transportation, when this is actually about 60 gr per 10 gram package.
We wrote T U T A J
about what the price and availability of medical marijuana really entails.
For more than a year, work has been underway to amend the Law on Counteracting Drug Addiction so that Polish entities can produce the raw material. During a number of committees and meetings, the MP in charge of amending the law, Jaroslaw Sachajko, came up with a solution acceptable to the government. It is the cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes by state institutes. The Institute of Natural Fibers and Herb Plants was chosen for this task, having expressed its own desire to do so.
Why state entities? In the minds of the people who make up the current government, marijuana is a very dangerous substance, and allowing private entities to cultivate it could lead to the derivation of the dried product to the black market (as ridiculous as that sounds). Therefore, the only thing government officials have been able to agree to is the cultivation of medical marijuana in state institutes.
There would be nothing wrong with this solution, if only the IWNiRZ really wanted to produce raw material of adequate quality and had any competence to do so. Unfortunately, all indications are to the contrary, and the institute mainly cares about subsidies and multi-million dollar grants for this purpose.
The Poznan institute has no competence in this matter. No wonder since it is an agricultural unit. That's right, the Ministry of Agriculture, not Health, will be responsible (according to the pending legislation) for the production of the drug! The situation in our opinion is due to the confusion between medical production and agricultural production. The fact that the people from the Poznań institute are completely unaware of what they are supposed to be doing is evidenced by the fact that they wanted to grow medical marijuana... in the field.
However, what is most appalling is that representatives of the institute knowingly lied during parliamentary committees! The main argument for domestic cultivation is the issue of the price of the raw material for patients. A representative of the IWNiRZ, when asked by parliamentarians about the final price of the product, announced that it would be 30 zlotys per gram.
I decided to determine how this was calculated.
I called the director of the institute, Dr. Małgorzata Łochynska - the person who supervises the Polish crops project within the institute - about the matter. From the director I learned that in the Poznan institute no one knows what the final price of their raw material will be!
-But what do you mean, after all, it is the low final price of the product that is, if not the only one, then the basic argument and reason for the cultivation by IWNiRZ," I asked.
When asked when they will set the price of their raw material, Ms. Lochynska replied that her team of experts is able to set the price after about a year after the new law comes into force! After a year! And when then it turns out that their cost of producing one gram is PLN 100? The institute will already be injected with subsidies, so only patients will lose out.
To questions about why, therefore, they lied at the committees about the price, and alleged that the final price would be PLN 30, I heard that "I will not discuss this with you".
The IWNiRZ has submitted documents for grants for its medical marijuana cultivation project. There is talk of an amount of 50,000,000. Interestingly, when submitting such an application, one has to state the costs. So does the institute know the costs, and thus the final price, and is hiding it because it will be much higher than the current prices of the dried stuff imported into Poland? There are many indications that the Poznań institute wants to produce, but not manufacture. Which means that they will receive the aforementioned funds, and after a year or two they will announce that they have failed.
This confirms what has been rumored in certain circles for a long time - the Poznań-based IWNiRZ has sensed an opportunity to make a lot of money and has no intention at all of growing medical marijuana just to make money by pretending to grow it.
I asked MP Jaroslaw Sachajko to comment on the fact that the institute does not know the final price of its raw material:
The situation you speak of is unacceptable, and I will certainly respond to these reports. It is unacceptable that the raw material produced in state-run units is ultimately more expensive than that offered by commercial entities.
-the MP said.
Today I also received unofficial information that IWNiRZ is considering yet another option, which perfectly illustrates what we are dealing with. Well, ladies and gentlemen, information has reached us that the Poznan institute is considering the possibility of buying raw material in the United States and repackaging it at home. The pharmaceutical law defines the process of repackaging a pharmaceutical raw material from a bulk package to a target package as "manufacturing." Therefore, if the raw material is brought in and repackaged at IWNiRZ, the institute will be able to say under the law that it manufactures medical marijuana. And it will rake in tens of millions in funding.
The topic is developing, we will monitor it and keep you informed.