Medical Cannabis Market: Introduction

According to the report, the global medical cannabis market was valued at US$ 8 Bn in 2018 and is projected to grow at a rapid pace from 2019 to 2027. The benefit of medical cannabis is that it complements the normal cannabis system called the endocannabinoid system in the body. Interest in and usage of medical cannabis is increasing significantly in several countries. Regulations governing its usage differ across countries and influence medical practice and experience. The current opinion among the public is that medical cannabis has the therapeutic potential to prevent and treat a long list of disorders. However, there is a significant gap between that assumption and the current evidence in the medical literature. The common view is that medical cannabis is used mostly by young adults. Nevertheless, older adults are increasingly using medical cannabis, and studies show variable prevalence, from about 7% to more than one-third, depending on the country. Cannabis therapy provides the geriatric population with relief from symptoms such as vomiting, sleep difficulties, chronic pain, tremor, agitation, spasticity, nausea, and decreased appetite.

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Broadening Range of Cannabis Consumer Products to Drive Global Market

Product invention and advancements in cannabis varieties, infused products, concentrates, vaporizing technology, and cannabis-based pharmaceutical products are projected to drive consumer adoption and spending. Medical cannabis consumer product companies will seek to differentiate their products through marketing, pricing, packaging, distribution, selection, and quality. It is believed that product differentiation and availability will be more prevalent in legal medical cannabis markets and drive consumer transition from illegal to legal markets.

Increase in Use of Cannabidiol (CBD) to Drive Global Market

In terms of derivative, the global medical cannabis market has been classified into cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and others. The cannabidiol (CBD) segment is anticipated to dominate the global medical cannabis market during the forecast period. Usage of cannabidiol (CBD) in the treatment of various conditions such as seizure, inflammation, pain, psychosis or mental disorders, inflammatory bowel disease, nausea, migraines, depression, and anxiety is expected to fuel the growth of the segment.

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Pain Management to be Key Application Area

Based on application, the global medical cannabis market has been categorized into mental health management, neurological disorders management, and pain management. The mental health management segment has been split into anxiety, depression, and others (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), etc.). The neurological disorders management segment has been segregated into epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and others (Huntington’s disease, multiple sclerosis, etc.). The pain management segment has been divided into neuropathic pain, cancer pain, and others (post-operative, chronic pain, etc.).

The pain management segment is likely to dominate the global medical cannabis market during the forecast period. According to the National Prescription Audit (December 2016), pain treatment was the second largest therapy in the U.S. High demand for pain management is projected to fuel the growth of the segment.

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Retail Pharmacies to be Major Distribution Channel

In terms of distribution channel, the global medical cannabis market has been classified into hospital pharmacies, retail pharmacies, and online pharmacies. The retail pharmacies segment is driven by high rate of establishment of retail pharmacies. Rise in approval for sale of medical cannabis in retail pharmacies and added benefits provided by the products positively affect sales. These factors are likely to augment the segment during the forecast period.

Medical Cannabis Market: Prominent Regions

In terms of region, the global medical cannabis market has been segmented into North America, Europe, Latin America, and Rest of the World. North America dominated the global medical cannabis market in 2018, followed by Europe. Increase in incidence of neurological & pain disorders, multiple sclerosis, and cancer is the major factor projected to drive the market in the region from 2019 to 2027. Considerable production of cannabis in Canada is also anticipated to propel the market in North America during the forecast period. Growth of the medical cannabis market in Europe is attributed to rise in production of cannabis due to legalization of sale of medical cannabis products in several countries in Europe

Launch of Innovative Products and M&A by Key Players to Augment Global Market

The global medical cannabis market is highly fragmented, with a large number of players holding majority share in domestic markets. Development and commercialization of medical cannabis products is one of the key trends in the global medical cannabis market. Moreover, companies are engaged in broadening product offerings in medical cannabis and strengthening positions in the global market. Prominent players operating in the global medical cannabis market include Canopy Growth Corporation, United Cannabis, Aurora Cannabis, Cannabis Sativa, Inc., Emerald Health Therapeutics, GW Pharmaceuticals plc, Tilray, Medical Marijuana, Inc., The Supreme Cannabis Company, Inc., and The Cronos Group.

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