By Beau R. Whitney, Vice President and Senior Economist, New Frontier Data
Africa has seen an accelerating wave of cannabis reform over the past 24 months, much of the movement so far anchored to the south, in Lesotho’s and South Africa’s respectively legalized markets. Meanwhile, many other countries in the continent have taken a more cautious approach to legal reform, waiting to see the approaches their neighbors will take.
Cannabis reform and regulatory deployment rely first and foremost on education and data. Policymakers in Africa simply are uncertain about what questions to ask, and which issues to address. New Frontier Data has been instrumental in providing data and insights about the global cannabis market to African leaders, to help inform their decisions on behalf of their citizens through economic and social benefits.
As detailed in New Frontier Data’s recently published Africa Regional Hemp and Cannabis Report: 2019 Industry Outlook, the continent has one of the highest usage rates (at 11.4%) of any region. That is nearly double the global average of 6%. It is notable that even with such high levels of usage, Africa has nevertheless been far behind other markets in …