An employee checks cannabis plants at a medical marijuana plantation in northern Israel March 21, 2017. Picture taken March 21, 2017.
(photo credit: REUTERS/NIR ELIAS)
The first major medical cannabis robbery was reported in Northern Israel this week, according to the Hebrew business publication Globes.
Masked and armed robbers raided a legal medical cannabis farm in the Sea of Galilee area, taking an unknown amount of cannabis. Police are investigating the incident.
The event comes as cannabis takes a front-and-center role in the upcoming April 9 election, with parties debating whether to make not only medical cannabis but recreational marijuana legal.
Israel recently made substantial reforms in the field of medical cannabis, legalizing its export, and providing opportunity for more farms to receive permits to grow pot.
The global medical cannabis market was valued at $8.3 billion in 2017 and is projected to rise to $28b. by 2024, according to a report by Energias Market Research. For Israeli companies to tap into the market, they will need both approval by the Health Ministry and the police.
The Zehut Party, led by former Likud MK Moshe Feiglin, has based a large portion of its campaign efforts on expressing support for the legalization of cannabis in Israel, which analysts say is what has allowed the group to straddle the 3.25% electoral threshold.
Several other political parties expressed their open support for or consideration of legalization, including Likud, Meretz and Gesher.Eytan Halon contributed to this report.
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