The industrial cannabis market is experiencing unprecedented growth, with an estimated value of USD 27.7 billion in 2022 and a projected surge to USD 82.3 billion by 2027, showcasing a remarkable Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 24.3%. This surge is fueled by diverse factors, including the increased legalization of medical cannabis in South America. Notably, countries such as Uruguay, Colombia, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and others have played pivotal roles in shaping the cannabis landscape in the region.
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Legalization and Decriminalization
The legalization of medical cannabis, initially spearheaded by Uruguay and Colombia, has triggered a domino effect across South American nations. While personal cultivation for recreational use is permitted in several countries, commercial sales are restricted to Uruguay. Countries like Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Peru have decriminalized possession of small amounts for personal use. The region is witnessing a surge in local companies obtaining EU-Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certification, coupled with favorable legislation approvals.
Market Growth Drivers
The South American cannabis market enjoys various growth catalysts, including favorable climatic conditions, low-cost labor, and economical construction costs compared to North America. The burgeoning market has attracted key players like Canopy Growth Corporation, Aurora Cannabis Inc., VIVO Cannabis Inc., HEXO Corp., and others.
CBD Dominance and Market Trends
The CBD-dominant segment is anticipated to secure the second-largest market share during the forecast period. This growth is driven by high demand and progressive policy reforms globally. As people prioritize self-care and mental wellness, the CBD market has flourished, particularly in edibles, skincare, and online distribution channels.
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Medical Segment and Consumer Demand
The medical segment contributes significantly to the overall cannabis market, addressing various medical conditions such as anxiety, gastrointestinal disorders, seizures, and epilepsy. The increasing network of cannabis dispensaries enhances product accessibility, promising a bright future for the market. Despite the growing recognition of medical benefits, challenges persist, including manufacturing inefficiencies and inadequate quality control. However, advancements in manufacturing procedures and quality standards position the pharmaceutical industry to deliver more consistent and compliant products.
South America's cannabis market is on a trajectory of substantial growth, driven by evolving legal frameworks, favorable economic factors, and increasing consumer demand for both medical and CBD products. As the industry addresses challenges and embraces innovation, it is poised to play a significant role in the global cannabis landscape.