Cannabis startup Greenfield MC moves into New Zealand ahead of legalisation vote

- September 4, 2019 2 MIN READ

  • Greenfield MC is the first Australian-owned company to cultivate medicinal cannabis for research purposes in New Zealand as part of a joint venture with a US-listed commercial producer
  • Research into using medicinal cannabis to treatment of health conditions affecting Maori people is a focus
  • NZ goes to the polls in 2020 with a non-binding referendum on legalising cannabis for personal use part of the vote.

Australian medicinal cannabis company Greenfield MC is launching a joint venture (JV) medicinal cannabis cultivation and research project in New Zealand.

The JV with US-listed Canadian company EPHS Holdings Inc., a commercial cannabis producer supplying the Florida market, and the local Wepiha Health Co., known as Greenfield MC Ltd (NZ), will initially study the efficacy of growing specific strains of the cannabis plant in various Kiwi environments.

The company will subsequently look at the effectiveness and safety of medicinal cannabis for conditions such as Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM), in research conducted by Maori for Maori.

Greenfield NZ director of research, Dr Anna Rolleston, a Senior Research Fellow at both the University of Auckland and the University of Waikato, said the health disparity for Maori is a key area of focus for the business.

“Once we have cultivation underway in New Zealand and have completed our initial research project, one of the objectives is to understand how medicinal cannabis could be beneficial to Maori healthcare and how the industry as a whole might support Maori aspirations,” she said.

Cultivation operations are expected to be underway by Q2 2020, with the research projects to commence after the first harvest.

The company is working towards lodging its NZ medicinal cannabis licence to cultivate for research and will ultimately look to include NZ importation and distribution licences. With a national election next year also including a non-binding referendum on the legalisation of cannabis for personal use, the company also has its eye on expanding the range to include the use of cannabis in nutraceuticals and wellness products.

Greenfield MC CEO Nicholas Hanna said the New Zealand JV takes the company closer to becoming a leading producer and supplier of medicinal cannabis products in the Asia-Pacific and Oceania regions.