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Marijuana Stats: 4 Eye-Opening Figures Related to Pot in Israel

By    |   Friday, 26 Jun 2015 11:17 AM

Israel has a history as a global leader in marijuana research along with medical cultivation and consumption. Its progressive stance has seen demand rise for more product and increased study about its medical benefits as society sorts through the facts and myths surrounding the drug.

Here are four eye-opening figures related to pot in Israel.

1. More than 18,000 permits
have been issued by the government that allow patients to receive medical marijuana. That figure is projected to grow to more than 40,000 permits by 2018, Haaretz reported.

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In January 2015, the country had eight government-approved medical cannabis growers and efforts under way to allow more farmers to grow the plant for medical use.

“In principle, the state and the Agriculture Ministry want more growers to enter the market,”  attorney Hagit Weinstock, who represents some farmers, told Haaretz. “It will lead to competition and could lower the price of cannabis to the patients, contribute to research and the development of new varieties, and develop new income options for farmers in Israel.”

2. Medical marijuana was estimated to be a $40 million industry for Israel in 2014, according to CNBC. If it were allowed to export its products, that figure would rise substantially.

Israel's largest medical marijuana grower, Tikun Olam, is pursuing efforts to provide medical marijuana to other countries, including the United States, where it has applied to be a registered organization under New York’s Compassionate Care Act, Forbes reported.

3. About 75 percent of Israelis support medical marijuana use, according to 2013 polls, reported JNS.org, a Jewish and Israel news site. Most major political parties also support such use, it said, and the country has a political party, called the Green Leaf Party, or “Aleh Yarok,” centered on legalization of the plant.

“The Ministry of Health at one point decided that patients, instead of going to the black market and getting whatever they get there, should be able to get material from a legitimate source, and [the ministry allowed] growing of medical cannabis,” marijuana researcher Raphael Mechoulam told JNS.org. “There is a committee in the ministry that approves every single physician. It is not given freely for any disease; there is a list of diseases for which medical cannabis is approved.”

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Mechoulam, considered "the father of medical marijuana," began studying the medical benefits for the plant during the 1960s at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

4. Israel ranks No. 25 on a World Drug List report ranking countries by cannabis use with 8.9 percent, according to Statistic Brain Research Institute. The United States ranked No. 12 with 13.7 percent. The global average was 5.8 percent.

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Israel has a history as a global leader in marijuana research along with medical cultivation and consumption. Its progressive stance has seen demand rise for more product and increased study about its medical benefits as society sorts through the facts and myths surrounding the drug.
marijuana, Israel, stats
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2015-17-26
Friday, 26 Jun 2015 11:17 AM
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