AusCann plans to sell marijuana in Australia in 2016

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Cannabis Plantation
A worker harvests cannabis plants at a plantation near the northern town of Nazareth May 28, 2013. Reuters/Amir Cohen

AusCann will grow medicinal cannabis on Christmas Island. After successfully receiving an investment of $3 million, the Perth-based company will include five varieties of cannabinoids sourced from its exclusive partner, Phytoplant Research.

"We have carefully selected Christmas Island for its isolation, climate and security," managing director Elaine Darby said. "In particular, we note that the amount of available daylight hours is critical to triggering cannabis plant flowering. Christmas Island experiences minimal changes to its daylight hours, so it is feasible that we could produce two crops each year."

The company, launched back in 2014, is already in the final stages of planning the trial planting. If proven successful, and if legislation permits, AusCann will begin farming the first crop to be marketed as soon as 2016.

AusCann has also begun reaching out to the locals on Christmas Island. Darby said that this will provide employment and help boost the local economy.

On Dec 2, Health Minister Sussan Ley said that the government will create a licensing scheme to regulate the cultivation of cannabis for medicinal or scientific purposes in 2016.

The Sydney Morning Herald also reports that NSW is expected to run the first trial of cannabis-based drugs in the country. This aims to help manage epilepsy in children.

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