A panel of commercial hemp farmers in Malawi is warning the government over legal action due to failure to award hemp permits. The growers were mostly from Malawi’s northern area, Mzimba, and said they had invested over $1.5M in hemp farming preparation.
William Mumba from the M’mbelwa Investment Ltd, a hemp company, said about the licensing delays that there’re very concerned as growers since they have invested a fortune in the sector. He added that they trusted that their government would keep its promise since the hemp sector entails the country’s economy and individuals’ economy.
Mumba further said that it’s regrettable that the Malawian government doesn’t look concerned, and that’s why they might mobilize themselves to push the government to give back the money. He also said that this would improve the country’s economy.
Martin Kumwenda, a farmer, wondered why a measure launched by the government was being compromised by the same government.
Martin said that they were asked by the Malawian government to prepare to grow marijuana, participated in training, paid permit charges, and started preparing land. They are concerned that the government failed to honor the agreed time frame.
The country’s proponents have disclosed that hemp by itself can potentially outpace tobacco revenue, which is Malawi’s chief export crop. Mumba said that hemp would certainly improve Malawi’s economy.
In March last year, the country’s Parliament passed the Cannabis Regulation Bill. The reform authorized industrial hemp growing, processing as well as marketing and set the permitted THC limit at 1.0 percent. It was widely supported by lawmakers who believe that it will trigger economic development within the country.
Malawi’s Invegrow, which has been calling for industrial hemp legalization since 2013, felt the reform’s approval as a personal achievement. Tanya Clarke, Invegrow’s CEO, said that the passage of the reform was a huge success in the hemp landscape.