Meyer says: "The CanPlan, which is aligned with the key objectives of the National Cannabis Master Plan, should contribute to economic development, job creation, rural development and poverty alleviation."
According to the Western Cape Department of Agriculture's head, Dr Mogale Sebopetsa, the CanPlan identifies several agriculture-led initiatives.
Sebopetsa says: "Agriculture-led initiatives include establishing industry stakeholder coordination and information sharing."
The CanPlan further encourages collaborative research/ trials on suitable varieties, extension and production support services.
• The mainstreaming of legacy and informal producers and agri-processors,
• Promotion of cannabis/hemp as a rotation crop as part of improved environmental/ regenerative practices, and
• Evaluating measures to protect and promote unique Western Cape hemp and cannabis characteristics.
He further states that initiatives, where other provincial role players could lead in providing a foundation for change, are also included in the plan.
The CanPlan highlights that the potential size of the cannabis industry in South Africa is estimated at R28bn, possibly creating about 10,000 to 25, 000 jobs across the value chain.
Meyer says that the development, growth and success of the cannabis industry require a value chain approach to ensure that the Western Cape benefits from this booming industry.
"The industry has the potential to absorb all skills levels, including low, semi and skilled labour. Tapping into this will contribute to growing our rural economy and creating jobs, which is this government's key priority," concludes Meyer.