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Medical Cannabis Market Trends

ID: MRFR//6896-CR | 146 Pages | Author: Rahul Gotadki| August 2021

Global Medical Cannabis Market Overview


Medical Cannabis Market Size was valued at USD 17.61 billion in 2021 and is projected to grow from USD 19.34 Billion in 2023 to USD 66.24 billion by 2032, exhibiting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.1% during the forecast period (2023 - 2032).


Growing research and development activities & financial support by various private and government organizations for cannabis research and rising prevalence of chronic diseases and other medical conditions are boosting the market growth.Medical Cannabis MarketSource: Secondary Research, Primary Research, MRFR Database and Analyst Review


Market expansion can be attributed to cannabis' favorable effect on patients suffering from conditions such as Alzheimer's, ALS, HIV, Crohn's, epilepsy, and seizures, as well as its many other medical applications.


As more people learn about CBD's health advantages, numerous nations are passing legislation to make hemp-derived CBD available legally. Multiple conditions, including chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, spasticity in MS, HIV/AIDS cachexia, and neuropathic pain, point to the therapeutic potential of cannabis.


In addition, many people throughout the world are suffering from conditions including fibromyalgia, glaucoma, and the nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy. The increasing frequency of chronic diseases and other medical disorders, as well as the growing number of studies devoted to the benefits of cannabis, are driving the market forward.


July 2023: In Ghana, cannabis cultivation for both medical and recreational use will be legalized with the signing of the Narcotics Control Commission Bill, 2023. As a result, the Ministry of the Interior will be able to issue the first cannabis farm permits in the nation. With the passage of this law, Ghana has made significant progress in its pursuit of the economic benefits of cannabis. The government has legalized limited cannabis growing with a low THC content in order to capitalize on the commercial potential of the plant for uses such as fiber and seed production. Furthermore, the therapeutic benefits of cannabis can now be extensively explored and used in a regulated environment.


Medical Cannabis Market Trends



  • Cannabis growing medical application fuels market growth


There are numerous medical applications of cannabis, including Alzheimer's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), Crohn's disease, epilepsy, and seizures, as well as its positive outcome among the patient pool, which is driving the market growth.


Furthermore, various chronic diseases such as chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, fibromyalgia, and glaucoma are affecting the population worldwide. According to the BightFocus Foundation, more than 3 million Americans were suffering from glaucoma in 2022. The increasing prevalence of such conditions has increased the demand for cannabis-based medication because there is substantial evidence that cannabis is an effective treatment for various diseases. In addition, growing R&D activities and financial support from various private and government organizations are boosting the market growth. For instance, in March 2022, Jazz Pharmaceuticals (Ireland) invested USD 100 million in GW Pharmaceuticals (UK) to support the manufacture of regulatory-approved cannabis-based medicines.


The increasing awareness about the benefits associated with hemp-based CBD, it is becoming legal in many countries. The evidence for the legitimate medical use of cannabinoids is found in various indications such as nausea/vomiting related to chemotherapy, spasticity in multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS cachexia, and neuropathic pain. In June 2018, the US Senate officially passed the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, known as the Farm Bill. The Farm Bill officially reclassifies hemp for commercial uses and removed hemp-derived CBD from the controlled substance list. It also included a provision lifting the US Industrial Hemp laws from an R&D pilot to full agricultural commodity status and effectively removed hemp-derived CBD (cannabidiol), and all naturally occurring cannabinoids therein, from the controlled substance list. The use of marijuana is legal in most European countries and North America.


Medical Cannabis Market Segment Insights


Medical Cannabis Product Type Insights


The medical cannabis market segmentation, based on product type, includes solids, dissolvable/ powders, oil, and ointments & creams. The dissolvable/powders segment held the majority share in 2021 contribution to around ~44-46% in respect to the medical cannabis revenue. This is owing to the increasing demand of powdered or dissolvable cannabis products in epilepsy, cancer, anorexia, glaucoma, and Alzheimer’s disease patients.


Medical Cannabis Derivative Insights


The medical cannabis market segmentation, based on derivative, includes cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol. The cannabidiol segment dominated the market in 2021 and is projected to be the faster-growing segment during the forecast period, 2022-2030. This is due to the wide range of application of cannabidiol in medical conditions such as such as seizure disorder or epilepsy, anxiety, pain, muscle disorder, Crohn’s disease, and Parkinson’s. This derivative prevents the breakdown of the chemicals in the brain coupled with increasing levels in the blood, reduces psychotic symptoms and muscle contraction, providing relief to the affected individual. In addition, Epidiolex, a cannabidiol product, reduces seizures in adults and children and can treat patients diagnosed with Sturge-Weber syndrome, Dravet syndrome, and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.


Medical Cannabis Route of Administration Insights


The medical cannabis market data has been segmented by route of administration into inhalation, oral, and topical. The inhalation segment dominated the market in 2021 and is projected to be the faster-growing segment during the forecast period, 2022-2030. The inhalation offers immediate effect and is the most potent method of consumption. The inhalation results in fast and is efficient for medicinal applications. Smoking and vaping are the two major categories that are used for the intake of cannabis. This method can be used in case of emergencies. In addition, the market players have developed powder forms of cannabis to treat respiratory problems that can be administered using inhalers.


April 2021: Cara Therapeutics, Inc. (US) announced topline results from its KARE Phase 2 dose-ranging clinical trial of Oral KORSUVA (difelikefalin tablets) for the treatment of moderate-to-severe pruritus in mild-to-severe atopic dermatitis (AD) patients.


Figure 2: Medical Cannabis Market, by Route of Administration, 2021 & 2030 (USD Billion)Medical Cannabis Market, by Route of Administration, 2021 & 2030Source: Secondary Research, Primary Research, MRFR Database and Analyst Review


Medical Cannabis Application Insights


Based on application, the medical cannabis industry has been segmented into pain management, neurological health management, and mental health management. pain management segment held the largest segment share in 2020, owing to its increasing use to relieve pain. The industry players have introduced a variety of tablets, ointments, creams, and lotions for external application. According to the National Academies of Science, cannabis/cannabinoids are highly effective in adult patients suffering from chronic pain. In addition, cannabis products are also known to treat cancer-related pain, fibromyalgia, migraines, neuropathic pain, and arthritis pain.


May 2020: GB Sciences, Inc. (US) announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will issue US Patent No. 10,653,640 entitled “Cannabinoid-Containing Complex Mixtures for the Treatment of Neurodegenerative Diseases”.


September 2018: Canndoc (Israel) producer of cannabis-based products, acquired by InterCure, a medical device company focused on respiratory treatment


Medical Cannabis Distribution Channel Insights


Based on distribution channel, the medical cannabis industry has been segmented into hospital pharmacy, retail pharmacy, and online pharmacy. The hospital pharmacy segment dominated the market in 2021, while online pharmacy is projected to be the fastest-growing segment during the forecast period. A large number of hospitals across the globe maintain an internal pharmacy to support the patients and their family members. The increasing number of individual and chain hospitals is supporting the sales of medical cannabis products.


Retail pharmacies are gaining attention due to the expanded care services, 24*7 availability, and introduction of IoT technology to serialize the products. In addition, retail pharmacies are integrating artificial intelligence (AI)-powered processes to improve service, minimize operational costs and optimize stock availability.


July 2023, CSIR-IIIM Jammu will head up India's first Cannabis Medicine Project, which will investigate the plant's many potential medical applications. Together with the Canadian company "IndusScan," we are working on a breakthrough initiative to harness the therapeutic potential of cannabis, a drug with a well-documented history of abuse, for the benefit of all people, and in particular those suffering from neuropathies, cancer, and epilepsy. The potential for this to completely transform the pharmaceutical industry is that medicines that were previously imported can now be made domestically and even exported.


July 2023,The Indian oncology company Carer announced a cooperation with Wholeleaf, a licensed producer of medical cannabis and cannabidiol. This collaboration aims to greatly


Medical Cannabis Regional Insights


By Region, the study segments the market into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Rest of the World. North America Medical Cannabis Market accounted for USD 11.34 billion in 2021 and is expected to exhibit an 12.69% CAGR during the study period. This large market share is due to medical cannabis legalization in 37 US states and the increasing adoption of products. The presence of major manufacturers, the rising adoption of medical cannabis products, and an increasing number of companies involved in R&D activities are driving the growth of the market in this region.


Further, the major countries studied are: The U.S, Canada, Germany, France, UK, Italy, Spain, China, Japan, India, Australia, South Korea, and Brazil.


Figure 3: MEDICAL CANNABIS MARKET SHARE BY REGION 2021 (%)MEDICAL CANNABIS MARKET SHARE BY REGION 2021Source: Secondary Research, Primary Research, MRFR Database and Analyst Review


Europe medical cannabis market accounts for the second-largest market share due to an increasing number of European countries legalizing cannabis for medical purposes. Additionally, prominent research and manufacturing activities in the region are anticipated to increase the market size in this region. The increasing prevalence of diseases such as multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and anxiety are fueling the market growth in Europe. Further, the Germany medical cannabis market held the largest market share, and the France medical cannabis market was the fastest growing market in the European region.


The Asia-Pacific Medical cannabis market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 54.03%from 2022 to 2030. owing to the huge patient pool of cancer and government initiatives of healthcare reforms. It holds the third-largest position in the medical cannabis market. In most Asia-Pacific countries, cannabis-based products are completely not acceptable. However, due to the increasing cases of epilepsy, cannabis-based products are prescribed by some physicians. Moreover, Australia medical cannabis market held the largest market share, and the Japan medical cannabis market was the fastest growing market in the Asia-Pacific region


In addition, China medical cannabis market is boosting the market growth owing to the entry of Chinese companies into the medical cannabis markets.


Medical Cannabis Key Market Players & Competitive Insights


Major market players are spending a lot of money on R&D to increase their product lines, which will help the medical cannabis market grow even more. Market participants are also taking a range of strategic initiatives to grow their worldwide footprint, including new product launches, contractual agreements, mergers and acquisitions, increased investments, and collaboration with other organizations. Competitors in the medical cannabis industry must offer cost-effective items to expand and survive in an increasingly competitive and rising market environment.


Canopy Growth Corporation, a well-known Canadian company, is engaged in the production, distribution, and marketing of a wide range of cannabis and hemp-based products across the globe. In April 2021, Canopy Growth Corporation and Supreme Cannabis Company, Inc. (Canada) entered into a definitive arrangement agreement under which Canopy acquired all of Supreme Cannabis’ issued and outstanding common shares.


Also, Cannabis Sativa Inc. (US) has operations in three divisions: telemedicine, contrast manufacturing, and brand development & marketing of products and services in the CBD and marijuana industries. In March 2021, Cannabis Sativa, Inc. has announced that PrestoDoctor, offers its online medical cannabis card service to patients in Iowa.


Key Companies in the medical cannabis market includes



  • Canopy Growth Corporation (Canada)

  • Cannabis Sativa Inc. (US)

  • GW Pharmaceuticals plc (UK)

  • Emerald Health Therapeutics (Canada)

  • Tilray Inc. (Canada)

  • Aurora Cannabis Inc. (Canada)

  • Cara Therapeutics (US)


  • Medical Marijuana Inc. (US)

  • GB Sciences Inc. (US)

  • Canndoc (Israel), among others


Medical Cannabis Industry Developments


March 2021: Emerald Health Therapeutics, Inc. (Canada) partnered with Medical Plants SLU (Spain), in which it provides resources and expertise to assist medical plants to produce medical cannabis dried flower and 2.0 products to serve emerging legal medical cannabis markets in the Europe.


May 2020: Tilray (Canada) received approval in the form of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certification in accordance with European Union standards, for its manufacturing facility in Cantanhede, Portugal.


May 2020: Aurora Cannabis Inc. (Canada) acquired Reliva, LLC (US), a leader in the sale of hemp-derived CBD products. It is providing the company with the opportunity for significant growth in the US and internationally.


Medical Cannabis Market Segmentation


Medical Cannabis Product Type Outlook




  • Solids




  • Dissolvable/ Powders




  • Oil




  • Ointments & Creams




Medical Cannabis Derivative Outlook




  • Cannabidiol




  • Tetrahydrocannabinol




Medical Cannabis Route of Administration Outlook




  • Inhalation




  • Oral




  • Topical




Medical Cannabis Application Outlook




  • Pain Management




    • Neuropathic Pain




    • Cancer




    • Inflammatory Pain






  • Neurological Health Management




  • Mental Health Management




Medical Cannabis Distribution Channel Outlook




  • Hospital Pharmacy




  • Retail Pharmacy




  • Online Pharmacy




Medical Cannabis Regional Outlook




  • North America






  • US




  • Canada






  • Europe






  • Germany




  • France




  • UK




  • Italy




  • Spain




  • Rest of Europe






  • Asia-Pacific




    • China




    • Japan




    • India




    • Australia




    • South Korea




    • Rest of Asia-Pacific






  • Rest of the World




    • Middle East




    • Africa




    • Latin America





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