New Zealand revamps plant-based medicine regulations to boost industry and research 

New Zealand’s Medicinal Cannabis Agency has approved several adjustments to the Medicinal Cannabis Scheme, aiming to foster economic growth and research within the industry. Although these changes are primarily technical, they include expanding the definitions of plant-based medicine categories, adjusting export quality criteria for easier market access, and permitting licenses for non-therapeutic plant research. Introduced in April 2020, the Scheme’s intent was enhancing patient access to quality plant-based medicine products. Chris James, Deputy Director-General Regulatory Services at Manatū Hauora, highlights the importance of supporting local production for both domestic and export markets, and fostering scientific research to drive innovation.

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