German imports of cannabis flower up in first half of 2020 versus 2019

Germany imported 4,126 kilograms (9,096 pounds) of medical cannabis flower for pharmacy dispensing during the first half of 2020, an increase of more than 60% compared to the same period last year, new government data shows.

A small part of the imported flower could’ve been re-exported to other European countries, including the Czech Republic, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta and Poland.

According to data from Germany’s Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM), the nation’s imports of medical cannabis flower during the first half of this year were up 63% versus the same period in 2019.

However, the time period used for the comparison can make a big difference when it comes to interpreting the new data.

If the first six months of 2020 are compared to the last six months of 2019, imports remained virtually the same.

That’s because most of last year’s imports were completed in the second half of the year, with 2019 imports totaling almost 6,750 kilograms. Some of that flower was re-exported.

If German flower imports during the second half of 2020 match those of the first six months, the country would end up importing 8,252 kilograms – a decent, but smaller, year-over-year increase versus the annual gain recorded in 2019.

Imported quantities in Germany fluctuate significantly throughout the year, so they are hard to predict and do not necessarily represent how domestic sales are evolving. That’s more accurately shown through insurance reimbursement data.

Recently, Israel surpassed Germany as the largest, high-THC medical flower importer in the world, with about 6 metric tons imported during the first half of this year.

That means during the first half of 2020, Israel imported almost 50% more flower than Germany.

No other country comes close to Israel or Germany in terms of imports of high-THC flower.

Alfredo Pascual can be reached at