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Prospects of Cannabis and its Cultivation in Sri Lanka

Authors:

K. L. M. Kalpani,

University of Ruhuna, LK
About K. L. M.
Department of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture
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K. K. I. U. Arunakumara ,

University of Ruhuna, LK
About K. K. I. U.
Department of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture
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K. M. C. Fernando,

University of Ruhuna, LK
About K. M. C.
Department of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture
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B. C. Walpola

University of Ruhuna, LK
About B. C.
Department of Soil Science, Faculty of Agriculture
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Abstract

Cannabis (Cannabis sativa L) is cultivated commercially in various parts of the world, predominantly for its medicinal properties (medicinal-type) and as a source of fibre and oilseed (fibre-type). The plant is known to contain over 567 chemical compounds out of which about one hundred chemicals belong to the highly valued unique class of Cannabinoids. At present, more than 25,000 Cannabis-based products worth 344 billion US$ are available at the world market. In a situation where the environmental agriculture is principally promoted, the present paper reviewed the applicability and potential worth of cultivating Cannabis as a medicinal plant in Sri Lanka. At present, Cannabis is restricted to be used in Sri Lanka, though the country spends about US$ 27,000 annually to import Cannabis for medicinal preparations. Cannabis is well- known for its wide range of environmental adaptation, higher nutrient and water use efficiency, low dependency on external inputs such as fertilizers and pesticides, high economic return for a unit area of land, and ability to cultivate both in indoors and outdoors. Considering the genetic resources and inherent knowledge, along with favourable climatic conditions available in the dry zone, suggest that Cannabis is an ideal crop, which could assure higher economic benefits under low inputs. While serving as a venture of foreign earnings, local cultivation would halt the country’s dependency on importation of Cannabis-based raw materials. However, legalization and cultivation should be rigorously monitored by an authorized body to ensure that the production meets the health regulations and utilized accordingly.
How to Cite: Kalpani, K.L.M., Arunakumara, K.K.I.U., Fernando, K.M.C. and Walpola, B.C., 2022. Prospects of Cannabis and its Cultivation in Sri Lanka. Sri Lankan Journal of Agriculture and Ecosystems, 4(1), pp.29–56. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljae.v4i1.67
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Published on 07 Jul 2022.
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