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The 5 types of startups that can be made related to cannabis

By 2024 the global cannabis market will be valued at nearly $ 90 billion. Will you be part of it?

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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By Deborah Bar-Nissim

The world market for cannabis has indisputably become the big bet of business due to its properties applicable for medicinal and recreational use. Little by little, the tendency of nations has been to allow the legalization of this product and seek regulations that abandon the restrictions that the marijuana plant has historically been subjected to.

According to the study "Cannabis Market - Growth, Trends, and Forecast (2019 - 2024)" , by 2024 the world cannabis market will be valued at almost 90 billion dollars, compared to 2018 when it "barely" reached a valuation of 14.5 billion, which means an annual growth rate of 33.2%. On the other hand, more than 30 countries have legalized the use of medicinal cannabis, while only five have given guidelines to fully legalize it for recreational use.

These circumstances - in which the medicinal sector makes up two-thirds of this market - have facilitated opportunities for innovation in which medical technology and pharmaceutical products related to cannabis begin to gain a presence as a bet for business development, based on disruptive technologies that take advantage of a growing market that combines agrotechnologies with medical technologies. However, according to this own information, the use of cannabis would continue to be exclusive to the health sector.

As in other industries in Israel, medical cannabis is at the forefront of innovation and technological leadership. Such is the case that cannabis for medical use to treat cancer, multiple sclerosis and other pain-related diseases has been legal since the early 1990s, and today it can be seen that new types of technologies related to the exploitation of the product has started to take off and they have received a strong investment for its development.

This boom in technological investments to make the most of the properties of cannabis began in 2017, when startups related to this plant generated figures of 76 million dollars, which has tripled today. It is worth mentioning that the importance that this product has acquired in Israel has had an impact on the existence of more than 70 technology startups related to cannabis, which can be classified as follows:

1. Increasing

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They are startups and companies that develop technologies for the growth or uniformity of a cannabis crop. Examples of these technologies are greenhouse lights that control growth, organic fertilizers and pesticides, and devices that monitor and control humidity in greenhouses.

2. Pharma

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They are startups and companies in the pharmaceutical field of cannabis that develop medicines and pharmaceutical products based on the plant, as well as solutions for chronic pain, cancer therapy and other health problems. Some of these companies apply Artificial Intelligence or other means to production as a way to ensure consistency between doses to patients.

3. Analytics

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They are startups and companies in the field of cannabis testing that develop software and technologies that help optimize performance and total revenue. These technologies can help maximize crop yields, create solutions with the Internet of Things to improve distribution logistics, or perhaps facilitate the wholesale trade of legal cannabis, among other solutions.

4. Genetics

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They are startups and companies in the field of cannabis genetics that use innovative technologies to stabilize the genetics of a cannabis crop and ensure consistency and uniformity. These companies work directly with the crop to adjust their product to a common pattern or type.

5. Devices and delivery methods

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They are startups and companies in the field of cannabis devices and delivery methods that create and develop unique and innovative products and devices for the consumption of medicinal cannabis. These products can include vaporizers, inhalers, edible products, among others.

Depending on the relationship between Mexico and Israel, the processes for the regulation of cannabis still remain slow within Mexican legislation, however, being a growing market, it is worth considering that the commitment to technologies based on the use of cannabis is a viable investment and collaboration option for the Mexican market.

It is important to take into consideration that in Mexico there are currently conventions and companies that urge to pay attention to the research and use of cannabis as a medical solution. If these Mexican actors begin to approach the technologies that Israel offers in this area, they could complement their technology and technological advance in order to provide security and a sustainable environment for the application of this plant.