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ABOUT
CTAA

Passionate About Inspiring Others

CTAA is a voluntary non-profit association for cannabis industry companies
and professionals. We are a regulatory body for our members and are
involved in industry and government liaison,education, networking, business
and skills development and general upliftment for members.

Our vision is to support, represent and advance the causes and interests of members of the cannabis industry. CTAA promotes the facilitation of trade for cannabis businesses from Africa, both locally and internationally, to benefit members and their clients.

Type of memberships

Membership Fees

These fees entitle a member to:

Vision

Our vision is to help create, support, represent and advance the causes and interests of members of the Cannabis industry in Africa. We aim to;

1.Advocate: To improve the legal and regulatory environment of the cannabis industry, allowing for access to trusted products
2.Educate: To provide a knowledge base and grow trust in cannabis with the general population, our communities, policy makers, and industry professionals;
3.Engage: To cultivate a unified, regulated industry with a safe and ethical corporate citizenship; To be a voice and platform for this industry to engage with government, press and its participants.
4.Promote: To advance the institution and infrastructure for a sustainable and vital cannabis industry;
5.Protect: consumers, patients, health care practitioners, standards, the industry
6.Build: To build a sustainable industry where all participants benefit along the value chain

Mission

With this vision in mind, we strive to promote and create an environment for the facilitation of trade for cannabis businesses from Africa, both locally and internationally, to the benefit of members and their clients.’ By;

1.Guiding, Enabling and Facilitating Trade
2.Fostering education, communication and informational exchanges between regulators,cultivators, manufacturers, healthcare providers, commercial partners and communities
3.Encouraging development of sound economic policies and cost-effective strategies to make our region competitive.
4.Driving Corporate Social Investment & Purpose with impact, integrity and sustainability
5.Recognising exemplary people, programs, policies and practices
6.Providing professional economic development opportunities.

Objectives

The primary objectives of the CTAA are to:

CANNABIS TRADE ASSOCIATION AFRICA (CTAA) – CALL TO ARMS

Natural medicines and the plants of the Earth should be a common treasury for all humankind and should remain accessible to all regardless of economic status, financial resources or class.  The principles of “cognitive liberty” and “bodily autonomy” endow all human beings with the inalienable right to freedom of thought within their own minds, as well as the freedom to ingest whatever they wish as long as it does not harm others.  Making cannabis and medicines derived therefrom available strictly through SAPHRA and government-licensed suppliers, facilities or health care centers will create barriers to access for the most vulnerable and in-need populations. 

The CTAA is a voluntary, non-profit association for cannabis industry companies and professionals.  We are a self-regulating body for our members and are involved in industry and government liaison, education, networking, business and skills development and general upliftment for members.  Our vision is to support, represent and advance the causes and interests of members of the cannabis industry.

The formation of the CTAA is motivated by the belief that at this stage the South African Government will only seek to enact legislation that will satisfy the duty imposed upon it by the September 2018 judgment of the Constitutional Court, namely that it will amend existing legislation to legalize the possession, in private, of limited amounts of cannabis for private use, leaving the balance of the cannabis industry under the rule of SAHPRA and the Department of Justice.  In the absence of strong, focussed pressure from the private sector and civil society, the Government is likely to take many years to consider and draft more comprehensive legislation that would enable South Africa to take full advantage of the international trend towards the legalisation of cannabis.  The intention behind the CTAA is to seize the moment and galvanise wide-spread public support from many sectors of South African society behind a specific proposal for comprehensive legislative, policy and institutional reform in line with international trends and recommended WHO reforms to bring about a sustainable cannabis industry where commerce and trade can thrive! 

The economic devastation being wrought by Covid-19 will make it more difficult (but not impossible) to consult widely on cannabis trade industry matters, and is also likely to retard the progression of the commercial cannabis industry.  We believe in seizing the opportunity to dynamically mobilise support for the sustainable growth of the cannabis industry in South Africa by creating a platform for stakeholders in the cannabis trade sector to collaborate in defining clear positions on political, medical and economic issues, and ultimately 1) putting forward specific proposals for consideration to the relevant organs of state, and 2) to launch legal proceedings to obtain the kind of relief that would further the cannabis industry.  As a collective body we can enhance the ability of civil society and the private sector to pressurise Government, the Department of Justice, SAHPRA and other relevant organs of state to act much more reasonably and swiftly.

As an association, we quickly identified the first and most accessible point of entry into a legal, commercial cannabis space, namely low-dose CBD products.  As individual cannabis companies venturing into a brand new sector, there are a number of challenges that face us.  To date, regulations governing the cultivation, manufacture and sale of cannabis have caused barriers to entry into this market due to over-regulation by SAHPRA, which favours large pharmaceutical companies only, to the detriment of small entrepreneurs and growers.  Unfortunately, SAHPRA’s latest CBD regulations (gazetted 22 May 2020) is a prime example of how only those with deep pockets and expensive medical and pharmaceutical infrastructure are able to afford the onerous licensing and production requirements placed on low-dose CBD products currently being treated as complementary medicines.

The CTAA members felt strongly that the liberation of the CBD market was the ideal cause to take on due to the safety profile of CBD, the proven health benefits thereof, the relaxation of regulations around CBD products internationally and the potential to benefit the entire domestic supply chain for cannabis distribution by activating the demand and market for input materials to create these products.  To achieve this goal, the CTAA would have to challenge SAHPRA and its regulations to ensure that we get common-sense regulations which creates a workable and sustainable commercial sector, while simultaneously protecting the end user and the public in general.  We want the end users of these products to have access to products which are effective, inexpensive and of a high quality.  Under the current CBD regime which allows for very low dosage, isolate product with a limited package size, this is simply not achievable thus placing the entire CBD and cannabis sector at risk of being ineffective.

The founding members of the CTAA, in conjunction with and supported by the TNHA, were instrumental in successfully challenging CBD scheduling and regulation, which opened up the market for these products and permitted trade.  Anyone trading in CBD products or benefiting from this supply chain is doing so because of the courage and generosity of those who were willing to take action and effect change.  This victory is under threat with pending regulations which would force all cannabis companies to conduct themselves as fully medically licensed entities, producing products to pharmaceutical standards at an enormous cost, which costs are ultimately passed on the end user.

If we, as cannabis companies, and the private sector do not band together to consolidate resources, expertise, energy and passion, we will be forced out of the industry and be left watching from the sidelines as “big pharma” and high net worth individuals take the lion’s share of the cannabis market. A strategic investment at this crucial juncture could yield very substantial dividends by enabling the emergence of comprehensive, common-sense cannabis regulation that allows for the establishment of a legal, sustainable and inclusive cannabis market many years earlier than it would otherwise be possible if left in the hands of the Government or regulators (if ever).

In summary, as a collective body:

  1. Our power to litigate and engage with regulators is enhanced.
  2. No individual company or organisation can be singled out or victimised by the regulators. 
  3. Our ability to fund litigation and other endeavours is greatly enhanced and places a far lower burden on individual companies and organisations. 
  4. We can ensure a fair and open playing field for all cannabis business sectors. 
  5. We can ensure that regulations are not one-sided and that the barriers to entry are removed.
  6. We can ensure that SAHPRA adopt regulations that give South Africa a chance to compete on an international level. 
  7. We can ensure that the cannabis industry can supply all South Africans with quality products at the best prices.
  8. We can ensure that “big pharma” does not monopolise the industry.
  9. We can secure inclusive economic growth. 

We wish to avoid:

  1. Regulations that create huge barriers to entry into the market.
  2. Regulations that ensure that only “big pharma” can afford to overcome these hurdles to create a legal product.
  3. Over-priced and expensive patented products that locks out the middle-man.
  4. Additional input costs which end up being paid by the consumers.
  5. The exclusion of previously disadvantaged farmers growers. 
  6. The inability of small entrepreneurs to afford to launch a legal cannabis business. 

Accordingly, the CTAA hereby launches its “call to arms” to challenge the latest CBD regulations gazetted on 22 May 2020 by SAHPRA.

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