Israel overtakes Germany as largest importer of medicinal cannabis flower

Twitter icon

Israel has officially overtaken Germany as the largest importer of medicinal cannabis in the world so far in 2020, according to data compiled by Tel Aviv-based Cannabis Magazine and Marijuana Business Daily.

According to data reported by MJBizDaily, about three metric tons were imported into Germany as of end of May for pharmacy dispensing, based on replies to a parliamentary inquiry.

Israel surpassed that by a large margin, importing close to 4 metric tons of cannabis by early June, according to data reported by MJBizDaily.

By July, Israel had imported more than 6 metric tons of cannabis flower into the country, according to Cannabis Magazine editor, Oren Lebovitch.

The data from Cannabis was gathered using the import numbers from companies’ public disclosures as well as replies Lebovitch had received from several executives involved in the import side of the transactions.
According to Cannabis, one of the reasons for the large number of imported flowers is that Israel's import requirements are less stringent that their European Union counterparts. This has led cannabis producers from around the world that do not have EU-Good Manufacturing Practice certification to see Israel as a popular destination for their products, which can't be sent to Germany.

Lebovitch told MJBizDaily that another reason for the high import rates was “insufficient domestic production of high-THC flower to meet internal demand.”.


Recent legislative changes which decriminalized the use of recreational cannabis have significantly eased the path to receiving a prescription for medicinal cannabis, which might help explain the rise in demand.

“Ongoing import agreements suggest that even more will be imported in the second half of the year,” Lebovitch added.

Israel has been known to have one of the highest percentages of cannabis smokers in the world, with a Yediot Aharonot poll placing the percentage of people who had smoked cannabis in the past year at 27%.

Israel had no large imports before 2020, but in only six months the country became the largest importer in the world.

One possible explanation for this meteoric rise is the contrast between the growing public support that cannabis legalization has received from politicians in the past year, coupled with public outcry which was reported over the low quality of domestic medicinal cannabis flowers since reforms in the industry were put into place by Health Minister Ya'acov Litzman in 2019. 

e-mail icon Facebook icon Twitter icon LinkedIn icon Reddit icon
Rate this article: 
Regional Marijuana News: