The Medical Cannabis World Forum will bring together a unique set of speakers who are shaping the global cannabis industry. From policy makers to business leaders, the forum will provide key insights from the people who are at the forefront of this industry.
Dr Joseph MuscatPrime Minister of Malta
Dr Joseph Muscat
Prime Minister of Malta
Dr Joseph Muscat took office as Prime Minister of Malta on 11 March 2013.
Dr Joseph Muscat was born in Pietà on 22 January 1974. He received his formal education at the Government Primary School in St. Paul’s Bay, Stella Maris and St. Aloysius’ College. He graduated with Honours from the University of Malta in Public Policy and later as Master of European Studies. In 2007 he attained a Doctorate of Philosophy in Management Research from the University of Bristol (UK).
After graduating, Dr. Muscat worked as a journalist, market intelligence manager and investment adviser. In 2004 he successfully contested the first European Parliamentary elections ever held in Malta. In 2008 he was elected as the Leader of the Labour Party and was subsequently elected Prime Minister on the 11th March 2013. Dr. Muscat won his second term as Prime Minister in June 2017.
Dr Muscat is married to Michelle, née Tanti, and they have twin daughters, Etoile Ella and Soleil Sophie.
Dr Chris FearneDeputy Prime Minister and Minister for Health
Dr Chris Fearne
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Health
Hon. Christopher Fearne was born in Attard, Malta on 12 March 1963. In April 2016 he was appointed Minister for Health after holding the position of Parliamentary Secretary for Health since April 2014. In June 2017 he was re-appointed Minister for Health following the general elections and in July 2017 he was elected Deputy Prime Minister following the Malta Labour Party’s extraordinary general council. Prior to this, Hon. Fearne worked as a Consultant Paediatric Surgeon and Clinical Chairman at Mater Dei Hospital. He is a Member of Parliament for the ruling Labour Party and was the Chairman of the Foreign and European Affairs Committee at the Maltese House of Representatives.
Hon. Fearne has worked as a doctor and surgeon for over 30 years. He received his formal education at St. Aloysius College and at the University of Malta graduating in Medicine and Surgery in 1987, becoming a Fellow of The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. He worked and studied in a number of children’s hospitals in England, including the Great Ormond Street Hospital in London. He also lectures students of medicine at the University of Malta.
Hon. Fearne is married to Astrid. They have 3 children, Dawn, Julian and Rafael.
Dr Chris CardonaMinister for Economy, Investment and Small Businesses
Dr Chris Cardona
Minister for Economy, Investment and Small Businesses
The Hon. Dr. Christian Cardona was born in 1972 and graduated as Notary Public and Doctor of Laws from the University of Malta. Prior to his appointment as Minister for the Economy, Investment and Small Businesses, Dr. Christian Cardona was a Senior Partner at CV Advocates.
He furthered his studies in International Maritime Law at the United Nations International Maritime Organisation where he obtained a first Class Masters degree in Shipping Law. Dr. Cardona is the author of the thesis entitled ‘United Nations Commission on International Trade Law – A Maltese Perspective’.
Dr. Christian Cardona was first elected to Parliament in 1996 and was re-elected in the 1998, 2003, 2008 and 2013 general elections. During the 2008 – 2013 legislature he served as the Labour Party main Spokesperson for the Industry, Self Employed and Foreign Investment. In previous legislatures he even served as the Labour Party Spokesperson for Competition, Communication and IT.
Dr. Cardona also served as a member in the Malta EU Parliamentary Committee during the negotiation process of Malta’s application to join the European Union as a full member.
In 2016, he was elected as Deputy Leader for Party Affairs for the Labour Party.
Dr Deo DebattistaParliamentary Secretary responsible for Malta Medicines Authority
Dr Deo Debattista
Parliamentary Secretary responsible for Malta Medicines Authority
Dr Deo Debattista was born on the 24th July 1963. A long-standing family medical doctor by profession, Dr Debattista was first elected in Parliament in 2013 from the first electoral district. He served as a member in the Council of Europe and Parliamentary Committee Chairman of Valletta 2018. In August 2013, Dr. Debattista was appointed Chairperson of the Occupational Health and Safety Authority in Malta. In June 2017, after being re-elected Prime Minister Joseph Muscat appointed him Parliamentary Secretary responsible for Valletta 2018 and Consumer Affairs. In this capacity, Dr Debattista is responsible for Valletta 2018 and its legacy, the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority (MCCAA), Malta Medicines Authority, Malta Laboratories Network, National Accreditation Board, Data Protection and the Directorate of Public Cleansing.
Dr.Debattista is married to Monica and they have two children, Andre and Emma.
Dr Miriam DalliMember of the European Parliament
Dr Miriam Dalli
Member of the European Parliament
Dr Miriam Dalli is a Member of the European Parliament since 2014. Currently she is the Socialist and Democrats coordinator for the committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Security. Over the past four years, Miriam Dalli worked extensively on the public health sector. She was recognised as the MEP of the Year for Public Health in 2017.
Dr Dalli is also a member of the Industry Research and Energy Committee where she is actively involved in the Union’s industrial policy and related measures and the application of new technologies.
As a Member of the European Parliament, Miriam Dalli has actively advocated for further investment in emerging sectors, urging the European Commission to especially allow for more funds towards research and development.
A lawyer by profession, MEP Miriam Dalli holds an MBA, and MA in European Studies and a BA (Hons) Communications from the University of Malta.
Tjalling ErkelensBedrocan CEO
Tjalling Erkelens (1956) is the founder of Bedrocan and currently holds the position of CEO / chairman of the board. Back in 1984 he started Bedrocan in the Netherlands together with his brother in law Freerk Bruining, focussing on indoor production of vegetables and herbs. Tjalling is strongly committed to maintaining these family business roots especially now Bedrocan continues to grow.
The cannabis plant came into the company back in 1992 for the first time. Since 2003 Bedrocan provides standardised cannabis of pharmaceutical quality to the Dutch government. It’s the oldest legal company in the world providing several, chemically different cannabis varieties to be used by patients on doctor’s prescription and as a raw material for the pharmaceutical industry (API).
During these past 26 years, Tjalling has developed and standardised unique methods of producing cannabis to pharmaceutical standards to a level achieved by no other company until today. His strong commitment to product quality resulted in the Dutch Bedrocan production facilities being approved for GMP/API (Good Manufacturing Practice/Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients) by the Dutch Health Authorities in 2017.
“It is my strong belief that there should be a clear distinction between medicinal and recreational use of cannabis and that patient needs for safe and consistent cannabis is a priority”, Tjalling says when talking about the company’s mission and vision. He is convinced that this can be achieved by going through the formal drug approval process. “Only fully standardised medicinal cannabis is the foundation on which such approval can be achieved.”
Antonio CostanzoCEO, EMMAC
Antonio joined EMMAC following holding the position of Head of International Development at Aphria Inc.
Before entering the cannabis industry, Antonio was Head of Public Policy and Government Relations at Uber. Prior to his position at Uber, Mr. Costanzo spent 10 years in the online gaming industry, at bwin, as Director of International Development and Regulatory Affairs.
Before joining bwin he was Head of Editorial Development Italy for the Eurosport Group and worked on the conception and creation of Sportitalia, the first free-to-air terrestrial all-sport television network in Italy
He studied journalism in Paris.
Chuck RificiFounder and CEO, Nesta Holding Co.
Founder and CEO, Nesta Holding Co.
Chuck Rifici is a pioneer of the North American cannabis industry having created and managed opportunities that have positively impacted the Canadian landscape.
Chuck has founded and been involved in the creation of some of Canada’s largest and most successful cannabis efforts. He is best known for having co-founded Canopy Growth Corporation (formerly Tweed Marijuana Inc.).
Today, Chuck is the Founder and CEO of Nesta Holding Co., a private equity firm that creates wide ranging partnerships and brands within the cannabis industry, and, Chairman of Auxly Cannabis Group, a platform spanning the entire cannabis value-chain, minimizing risk while simultaneously maximizing exposure to multiple, geographically-diverse cannabis companies through a single source. He is also the former Chair of National Access Cannabis/Meta Cannabis Supply Co., a global leader in medical and recreational cannabis retail.
Chuck is a chartered professional accountant (CPA). He obtained his MBA from Queen’s University and holds a BASc in Computer Engineering from the University of Ottawa.
Luana Mifsud BuhagiarDirector, Malta Medicines Authority
Luana Mifsud Buhagiar
Director, Malta Medicines Authority
Luana Mifsud Buhagiar studied Pharmacy at the University of Malta where she graduated with first class honours as Bachelor of Pharmacy followed by a postgraduate Master of Pharmacy Degree with distinction. Her disseminated research work focuses on pain relief, pharmaceutical sciences and precision medicine. A pharmacist by profession, Luana has embarked on a career in community pharmacy practice, followed by endeavours in the regulatory sciences field. She developed the Research, Scientific Affairs and Innovation Unit at the Malta Medicines Authority and currently holds the position of Director, Advanced Scientific Initiatives with responsibilities including the regulation of medicinal cannabis. Luana Mifsud Buhagiar represents Malta in a number of international fora and is active within the European medicines regulatory network in the areas of innovation and training. She is presently reading for a PhD at the University of Malta by research on analytical, clinical and regulatory implications of pharmacogenetics.
Profs Serracino InglottChairperson, Malta Medicines Authority
Profs Serracino Inglott
Chairperson, Malta Medicines Authority
Anthony Serracino Inglott is a Professor at the Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of Malta. Professor Serracino Inglott studied Pharmacy at the University of Malta and is a registered pharmacist. He continued his postgraduate studies at the University of Cincinnati where he obtained a Doctorate degree in Pharmacy and completed a residency at the University of Cincinnati Medical Centre. Serracino Inglott published over one hundred scientific papers and delivered a number of presentations at international conferences related to the pharmaceutical and regulatory sciences. He held the posts of Director, Institute of Healthcare and Head, Department of Pharmacy, University of Malta. Serracino Inglott was one of the founder members of the Richmond Foundation and the Hospice Movement, and started a number of initiatives related to the care of the elderly such as the establishment of Zammit Clapp, now Karen Grech Hospital, Meals on Wheels and Telecare, as well as laboratory initiatives such as the Malta Standards Laboratory and the Malta National Laboratory. Serracino Inglott’s consultancy experience includes being a court expert in toxicology and forensic sciences, advisory roles to Ministries and government entities, as well as Qualified Person for the pharmaceutical industry. He is Chairman of the Malta Laboratories Network and member within the Ethics Committee, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery and the board of governors of the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority. Since 2013, Professor Anthony Serracino Inglott is the Chairperson of the Malta Medicines Authority.
Profs Lilian M. AzzopardiHead, Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of Malta
Profs Lilian M. Azzopardi
Head, Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of Malta
Lilian Azzopardi is a professor of pharmacy at the University of Malta, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery. She is currently the Head of Department of Pharmacy at the University of Malta. She has an extensive academic experience locally and at an international level and she has spearheaded innovative introductions in pharmacy education that are directed to meet the needs of the Health Services and the Pharmaceutical Industry in Malta. Professor Azzopardi was responsible for the introduction at the University of Malta of a course leading to a degree in Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Technology, which was precisely planned to meet the needs of the industry whilst retaining a high academic standing and for the development of the international post-graduate Doctorate in Pharmacy offered in collaboration with the University of Illinois at Chicago, USA.
Professor Azzopardi is well acknowledged in the international field for her ability to ingrain in the education process ways how to combine the basic sciences with the practice areas to meet the needs of stakeholders. Her ability to do this is enhanced by her experience in practice in hospital and community pharmacy as well as in the pharmaceutical industry.
Professor Azzopardi has been recognised through research awards by the International Pharmacuetical Federation (FIP) and the European Society of Clinical Pharmacy (ESCP). She served as Director of the ESCP and is at present the President of the European Association of Faculties of Pharmacy. She was bestowed the Fellowship by the International Pharmaceutical Federation.
She has published over 100 papers and scientific communications and a number of internationally-renowned textbooks. She is established in the area of quality systems through her research work on Validation Processes.
Andrea PaineNational Director of Government Relations, Aurora Cannabis
National Director of Government Relations, Aurora Cannabis
Andrea Paine is National Director of Government Relations at Aurora Cannabis. She is the lead director for federal and provincial government relations, community relations with municipalities and local non-profit associations, and is leading collaborative GR efforts in Europe. Before joining Aurora, in May 2017, Andrea was a Citizenship Judge in Montreal, where she was a member of the Citizenship Commission at Refugees, Immigration and Citizenship Canada. Andrea also has a long professional career in politics and government. She worked for over twenty-five years with cabinet Ministers in Quebec provincial departments of Food and Fisheries, Transport and Education, and Federal Ministers of Human Resources and Social Development, Heritage, Health, as well as with the Government House Leader where she was responsible for all legislation going through Canadian Parliament, Parliament committee hearings, negotiating with the opposition parties and stakeholder groups. During her time at Health Canada, Andrea was responsible for the drafting and successful passage, through the House of Commons and the Senate, of the Canadian Consumer Protection Act, and was part of the team that brought forward the first medical cannabis regulations in Canada. She also ran as a Federal candidate in Montreal’s West Island during the 2004, 2006 and 2008 Federal elections.
Jeannette VanderMarelCEO, Beleave
Jeannette has a deep knowledge of both the production and retail sides of the cannabis industry, and a proven track record of delivering results. She previously co-founded and served as President of Good & Green and was a co-founder of The Green Organic Dutchman (TSX:TGOD), both Licensed Producers by Health Canada and now joins 48North as co-CEO.
With a critical focus of producing a high-quality, consistent, organic and homogenous product, Jeannette strives to elevate 48North in the cannabis industry, disrupting the market with next-generation cannabis products. Jeannette has been extensively engaged in Canadian agriculture and has worked with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs to develop a cannabis-focused Good Agricultural and Collections Practice Program focused on plant identification, pest control products, purchasing, production, post-harvest processing, personnel training, preventative maintenance and recordkeeping.
Christopher DayVice President of External Relations, Marijuana Business Daily
Vice President of External Relations, Marijuana Business Daily
Chris Day is the Vice President of External Relations and handles global partnership development for MJBizDaily and the MJBizCon family of events. Prior to Marijuana Business Daily, His 20+ year career designing Fortune 100 advertising campaigns, experiential events, as well as Public Relations and Public Affairs programs within marketing agencies spanned a wide variety of complex high growth industries. Having started his career just before the dot.com boom of the mid to late 90’s, he now uses the experience that comes with decades of brand building, global strategic partnership development and surviving numerous boom and bust cycles to more effectively build a sustainable and responsible cannabis industry.
Chris develops partnership programs and scenarios which serve the needs, aspirations, and opportunities of professionals creating the legal cannabis markets around the world and believes in giving back to the communities within which we work and live. He has happily served on boards championing small business development, multi-cultural communication and diversity, and environmental sustainability. The New Mexico native is a graduate of Colorado State University and in between busy business trips now enjoys living in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains near Denver, Colorado with his wife, Coco, and their two daughters.
Deepak AnandCEO, Materia
Mr. Anand steps into the position with a wealth of knowledge and experience in the cannabis industry. He is a public speaker and engaged with Canadian and International media on all subjects related to the Cannabis industry.
He is a recognized thought leader in the Canadian cannabis space and brings 15 years of leadership experience in the health, charitable/non-profit, and private sectors in Canada.
Within the global cannabis sector, Mr. Anand has worked with senior government officials, politicians, policy makers, health professional organizations, clinical practitioners, educators, investors, patients as well as producers. He has also served on the boards of various pharmaceutical associations across Canada, the United States and Europe.
Prior to joining Cannabis Compliance Inc., Mr. Anand acted as the Executive Director for the Canadian National Medical Marijuana Association (CNMMA). The CNMMA was the first and only industry association that factored in all facets of the nascent Cannabis industry in Canada.
Mr. Anand was also an Adjunct Professor at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU). At KPU, Mr. Anand wrote, and taught Canada’s first and only Cannabis course titled ‘Cannabis Professional Series’ taught via an online module.
Most recently, Mr. Anand was the Vice President for Zenabis (International Herbs Medical Marijuana Ltd)., a Health Canada licensed producer under the ACMPR with facilities in British Columbia and New Brunswick, Canada.
Mr. Anand holds a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) and Management from Vancouver Island University.
Barinder S. BhullarVice President, The Supreme Cannabis Company, Inc.
Barinder S. Bhullar
Vice President, The Supreme Cannabis Company, Inc.
Barinder Bhullar is the Vice President, Government Relations and International Affairs, at The Supreme Cannabis Company, Inc. Mr. Bhullar leads domestic and international government relations and guides Supreme Cannabis’ global market strategy for medical cannabis.
Mr. Bhullar brings more than a decade of experience as a trusted public affairs strategic advisor. He has served in a variety of senior roles within government, including as the Director of Policy in the office of the Premier of British Columbia, where he worked to ensure that specific policy developments aligned with the broader objectives of government. In this role, he led a team responsible for strategic planning and cross-government coordination.
As Senior Director of International Missions for the B.C. government, Mr. Bhullar identified and led the execution of targeted international trade missions and events, ensuring those missions delivered trade and investment outcomes for the province. Mr. Bhullar has also served as Chief of Staff to the B.C. Minister of Health.
Marion ZammitInvestment promotion, Malta Enterprise
Investment promotion, Malta Enterprise
Marion Zammit works in the Investment Promotion Department within Malta Enterprise, Malta’s economic development corporation. Her career has included various positions in the advanced manufacturing sector, including quality, production processing, as well as logistics and supply chain. Marion has worked and gained experience in the Pharmaceutical Sector, both in manufacturing as well as sales and marketing. At Malta Enterprise, Marion has been tasked with supporting various sectors including Pharma, Medical Cannabis, and other projects of national interest.
Dr Charmaine GauciMD, MSc, PhD, FRSPH, FFPH
Dr Charmaine Gauci
MD, MSc, PhD, FRSPH, FFPH
Dr Charmaine Gauci is the Superintendent of Public Health within the Ministry for Health in Malta with wide responsibility of public health to safeguard and enhance the health status of the people. Previous to this postions, she had occupied the position of Director of the Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Directorate for nine years.
She graduated as a medical doctor in 1991. Over the years she has developed skills in the wide aspect of the public health specialty. She pursued her studies with masters in public health and consequently followed the European Programme in Epidemiological Training. She has also specialized in fitness and nutrition. She attained her PhD Degree in epidemiology in 2006. Dr Gauci is also a Prince practitioner in project management. She is a fellow of the UK Royal Society for Public Health and a fellow of the UK Faculty of Public Health.
Dr Gauci is a senior lecturer at the University of Malta and delivers lectures in the field of public health with special interest in Public Health, Epidemiology, Communicable Diseases, Health Promotion and Policy development. She is active in the field of public health having served as secretary, vice president and also served as president with the Malta Association of Public Health Medicine for four years.
Dr Gauci acts as a focal point for a number of bodies within the European Commission including HLG, ECDC and Health Security and for the World Health Organisation and is project leader for a number of EU projects.
Her aim is to protect and improve people’s health and wellbeing.
Alfredo PascualInternational Analyst, Marijuana Business Daily
International Analyst, Marijuana Business Daily
Alfredo Pascual is a Germany-based International Analyst for Marijuana Business Daily, specialising in international cannabis markets and regulations. With an academic background in business and public policy, he founded Transnational Cannabis, a consultancy firm that focused on cannabis regulatory frameworks in Europe and Latin America. Previously, Alfredo worked in business development for ICC Labs with a primary focus on developing expansion opportunities internationally.
George GregoryHead of Tax Advisory, RSM Malta
Head of Tax Advisory, RSM Malta
George’s career spans several years assisting a wide range of clients in their business needs. George heads the tax advisory and corporate unit at RSM Malta leading a team of lawyers, accountants and tax specialists in the provision of innovative and dynamic fiscal solutions to international companies and high net worth individuals.
George is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, holds a Diploma in Fund Administration and is also a member of the Institute of Financial Services Practitioners while being a member of RSM Centre of Excellence on Taxation.
John B. AirdCEO, Hoshi international
John B. Aird
CEO, Hoshi international
Mr. Aird is a career entrepreneur and has been working in the Canadian medical cannabis industry since its infancy and has played an instrumental role in creating significant shareholder value for his clients. Since 2014, Mr. Aird has successfully assisted numerous applicants to become Licensed Producers under the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations. From 2016-2018, Mr. Aird acted as a management consultant for Aphria Inc. (TSX: APH), overseeing Corporate & Regulatory Affairs, along with certain Business Development activities. During this period, Aphria experienced tremendous growth and became an industry leader in medical cannabis. In 2017, Mr. Aird acted as the Managing Director for Nuuvera Canada (NUU.V) and played an integral role developing their domestic and international strategy. NUU IPO’ed in January 2018 and was acquired by Aphria in March 2018. Mr. Aird is a former Director of the Canadian Cannabis Association (CCA), and ARA – Avanti Rx Analytics, one of the only Canadian GMP-certified cannabis laboratory. Mr. Aird is the co-founder of Olli Brands Inc., a cannabis infused tea and edibles company operating in Canada. Prior to working in medical cannabis, Mr. Aird developed and sold a 50 MW solar project to Samsung. Mr. Aird started his career as a senior advisor in the Office of the Premier of Ontario, after receiving his B.A. degree in Political Science from the University of Toronto, Trinity College in 2003.
Joel SherlockCo-Founder & Chairman, Vitalis
Co-Founder & Chairman, Vitalis
A serial entrepreneur and business leader, Joel is a born connector who has been building great teams and delivering the expertise to execute. Joel has been at the helm of 9 successful start-ups and corporate exits, including one of BC’s top private real estate brokerages, a national first action sports e-commerce company, a successful corporate consulting firm and a few private equity funds.
Joel’s time is now focused on Kelowna, BC-based Vitalis Extraction Technologies, an industry leader in manufacturing industrial supercritical CO2 extraction equipment, where he is Chairman and Co-Founder, as well as on Spectrum Asset Leasing and Doventi Capital. Doventi Capital in Vancouver is the private equity fund he co-founded to support professionals in the growing legal cannabis market. Spectrum Leasing in Toronto is an asset-backed lender designed to support entrepreneurs and manufacturers in the world’s fastest-growing market.
Born in Winnipeg Manitoba, Joel’s early years were on the farm, that all seems a far cry from studying finance at UBC and Harvard Business School and offices in Vancouver, Kelowna and Toronto. Joel still loves to balance all this travel with a few days on the farm, with no phone or internet.
Jochen SchumacherTechnical Sales – HARTER
Technical Sales – HARTER
Jochen Schumacher has worked for HARTER since 2001. He was responsible for design and project management with a focus on advancing the drying technology for use in the pharmaceutical and food industry. At the end of 2013, he changed to Technical Sales to apply his extensive knowledge in this field. Being a competent consultant for food and pharmaceutical dryers Schumacher saw the medical cannabis issue come up and urged to develop an elaborate drying technique especially for cannabis buds. He is also co-founder of the German Canadian cannabis network MYHEMP (Medical Phytocannabinoid-rich Hemp).
Hendrik KnoppManaging Director, Aphria Germany
Managing Director, Aphria Germany
Hendrik Knopp is the Managing Director of Aphria Germany. Prior to joining Aphria, Mr. Knopp practiced as a lawyer for 19 years with WZR Legal in Hamburg, Germany, served from 2006 to 2011 as Director Poker Marketing and Marketing Development at Bwin.Party PLC and from 2012-2017 as Managing Partner for various IT startups. Besides his law degree Mr. Knopp received an degree of Master of Law and Economics from the Erasmus University Rotterdam in 2002.
Rhys CohenPrincipal Consultant, FreshLeaf Analytics
Principal Consultant, FreshLeaf Analytics
FreshLeaf Analytics is the business intelligence arm of Australia’s largest chain of medicinal cannabis clinics. With access to proprietary datasets, FreshLeaf can answer key questions and provide valuable insights for cultivators, producers, distributers and regulators of cannabis medicines.
As Principal Consultant, Rhys Cohen leads the FreshLeaf team and is responsible for business development and project delivery. Rhys has worked in Australia’s cannabis sector since 2015 and his industry analysis has been cited by Deloitte Access Economics and the Office of Drug Control. He has also spoken on the political, regulatory and economic features of medicinal cannabis at events across Australia and around the world.
Fred RoederManaging Director, Consumer Choice Center
Managing Director, Consumer Choice Center
Fred Roeder is Managing Director of the Consumer Choice Center and a Health Economist from Germany and has worked in healthcare reform and market access in North America, Europe, and several former Soviet Republics. One of his passions is to analyze how disruptive industries and technologies allow consumers more choice at a lower cost. Together with his Canadian and American colleagues, he advocates for smart and accessible regulation of medical and recreational Cannabis across the globe. Among many op-eds and media appearances, he has been published in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Wirtschaftswoche, Die Welt, the BBC, SunTV, ABC Portland News, Montreal Gazette, Handelsblatt, Huffington Post Germany, CityAM. L’Agefi, and The Guardian.
Rikke JakobsenCEO, Cannabis Danmark
CEO, Cannabis Danmark
Cannabis Danmark is a non-profit organization that collect and provides information about medical cannabis to all who have something to do with this topic in Denmark – politicians, ministries, physicians, patients, growers and business in the industry.
Our goal is to get the highest quality cannabis til the lowest prices and facilitate research in high standard.
I’ve worked with this topic since 2013 starting with providing cannabis to my father who had prostate cancer.
In 2014, after my father’s death, I helped form the Medical Cannabis Association Denmark, where I later became chairman. The association is today merged into Cannabis Denmark.
With a background from politics and a Bachelor in nutrition and health, I’ve lobbied to get the 4-year pilot program in Denmark regarding medical cannabis and helped introduce Denmark’s agriculture and food organization to the issue in 2015. That’s one of the reasons we have a prescribing program and cultivating danish cannabis today.
Jan Witte M.DMedical Director, Aphria Germany
Jan Witte M.D
Medical Director, Aphria Germany
Jan Witte has a medical degree from Charité Medical School Berlin and has worked as a consultant physician in Hematology and Oncology in one of Berlin largest hospitals. He was leading the clinical research department of Vivantes Klinikum Neukölln. His main focus in oncology has been immunotherapies. He has extensive experience in the clinical use of Cannabis and Cannabinoids in oncology and pain patients. Since 2018 he is the medical director of Aphria Germany.
Robin EmersonMedical Cannabis campaigner and father to Jorja Emerson
Medical Cannabis campaigner and father to Jorja Emerson
Robin has been at the forefront of Medical Cannabis reform within the United Kingdom, having successfully obtained the first child prescription for his daughter, Jorja Emerson, once it was made legal on the 1st November 2018.
Robin fought tirelessly to negotiate the assault course that was set in front of him in order to pave the path forwards in the UK and to help in understanding the legal and health procedures in obtaining this complex medication.
Supplied by Aphria, this formula has been instrumental in Jorja’s life and it’s quality.
Robin continues to be a leading figure and spokesperson in Medical Cannabis reform within the United Kingdom for patients rights. He works closely with key stakeholders and the Uk Government on advocating Medical Cannabis use and paving new paths on how best to help the thousands of people who desperately need access to this pioneering medication.
Nick DavisCEO, Memery Crystal
CEO, Memery Crystal
Nick Davis is the Chief Executive of Memery Crystal and a senior partner in the firm’s corporate team.
Memery Crystal are the leading UK law firm on advising the emerging cannabis sector on business set-up, capital markets, mergers and acquisitions, private fundraising, licencing and commercial contracts. Currently advising 21 companies in the sector, Nick also led the Memery Crystal team on the recent NEX listing of medicinal cannabis investment vehicle, Ananda Developments. Nick firmly believes we are in a new era for the cannabis sector, with a strong pipeline of companies looking to list in London, as legislation and attitudes change. Nick has a personal interest in alternative medicinal treatments as a Trustee of the charity ‘Olivia’s Vision’, the UK’s leading Uveitis charity raising awareness of the condition from which his daughter, Olivia, suffers.
Nick specialises in corporate finance with expertise in flotations, equity capital markets and mergers & acquisitions. He advises on public company listings on both the Main Market and AIM and has extensive experience acting for other issuers, NOMAD/brokers and sponsors. Nick is the only lawyer who sits on the London Stock Exchange’s AIM advisory group and regularly speaks at seminars and conferences around the world in relation to the London capital markets.
Timo BongartzGeneral Manager, Fluence Bioengineering
General Manager, Fluence Bioengineering
Timo Bongartz is general manager for Fluence by OSRAM for the EMEA region, supporting growers across Europe, the Middle East and Africa to achieve their cultivation goals. Bongartz also advises OSRAM’s Smart Farming business segment, which he led prior to his role at Fluence, in developing next-generation sensor and software solutions for greenhouses, vertical farms and across the food supply chain. He has consulted and partnered with numerous startups in the technology industries in his previous roles at Langenscheidt GmbH & Co KG and PMMG Group GmbH by offering strategic and operational direction to streamline and identify opportunities in each industry. Bongartz has a MBA from Hochschule Muenchen and has earned a number of horticulture certificates from Wageningen University and HAS Hogeschool. He is also a mentor at Startupbootcamp Foodtech
Dr Andrew AgiusMedical Director, MD MSc PGC
Dr Andrew Agius
Medical Director, MD MSc PGC
Dr Andrew Agius graduated as a doctor in 2001 and has been working as a family doctor since then. Dr Agius specialized in family medicine in 2009 and has recently completed his post-graduate training in pain management. Dr Agius is the leading Maltese doctor advocating for a better understanding of the medicinal properties of cannabis and has been conducting research on the use of cannabinoids in chronic pain. In 2015 together with a team of professionals he established The Pain Clinic, an Integrative Medical Centre for the holistic management of persistent pain, where patients can be managed by a team of professionals and are offered all the relevant therapeutic options to help improve their quality of life. Dr Agius is also the founder of Kannatalim, an educational initiative on the use of cannabis as medicine and workshops for patients and carers.
Alison McMahonFounder & CEO, Cannabis At Work
Founder & CEO, Cannabis At Work
Alison McMahon is the Founder & CEO of Cannabis At Work. Founded in 2015, Cannabis At Work assists clients in Canada and internationally with sourcing the right people to work in their cannabis business. Alison is the host of the Blown Away podcast, an experienced public speaker, entrepreneur, former university instructor, and HR professional.
Cheryl ShumanInvestor, Entrepreneur, Media Personality, Cancer Survivor
Investor, Entrepreneur, Media Personality, Cancer Survivor
Cheryl is a medical cannabis activist, crediting the drug for saving her life after she was diagnosed with cancer and continues to work till today with other cancer patients through the many organizations she is involved in.
Cheryl also brings decades of experience working with media, celebrities, marketing and health care in Beverly Hills, where she transformed her activism into a thriving profitable media enterprise. She has been on the covers of Adweek, The Jerusalem Post, The New York Times Magazine, The London Times Magazine and was named one of the most powerful women in cannabis in Fortune Magazine. She was also featured in Vogue, Elle, LA Confidential, The Dr. Phil Show, The View, ABC’s 20/20 and Good Morning America, resulting in over $1 billion worth of earned media.
Cheryl Shuman currently appears regularly on CNN, Fox Business, CNBC and many others as a cannabis expert reporter. She also has TV series, documentaries and feature film projects in development and is represented by the prestigious William Morris Endeavor Agency in Beverly Hills, California.
Steve MooreStrategic Counsel, Centre for Medicinal Cannabis
Strategic Counsel, Centre for Medicinal Cannabis
Steve is the Strategic Counsel for the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis and has 25 years experience of working in social change and political campaigns
He directed the campaign with Charlotte and Billy Caldwell to reform policy relating to the access of medicinal cannabis in the UK
Steve was formerly Chief Executive of David Cameron’s Big Society Network and has curated change programmes for Channel 4 Television, the Royal Society of Arts and PWC
Jarett LalondePolicy Advisor, Regulated Industries - ShopifyPlus
Policy Advisor, Regulated Industries - ShopifyPlus
Jarett Lalonde is the Senior Advisor to the Regulated Industries Team at Shopify. He has over 15 years of experience in both the public and private sectors with a strong background in public policy development, regulatory affairs, strategic communications, and advocacy.
As the Senior Advisor for Regulated Industries at Shopify, a global leader in retail solutions, Jarett is responsible for policy and regulatory analysis, research, and global expansion into new markets and verticals. Shopify’s current portfolio of cannabis merchants include provincial Crown Corporations, federally regulated licensed producers, and private-sector retailers.
Prior to joining Shopify, Jarett was a Director at Canada’s largest privately owned public affairs firm where he advised private sector clients in the energy, infrastructure, and cannabis sectors. He has also served as a senior advisor to ministers in the governments of Canada and British Columbia.
Dr. Stephen GlazerM.D., FRCPC, FCCP, Internal Medicine, Chief Medical Officer - CannaWay Clinic Inc.
Dr. Stephen Glazer
M.D., FRCPC, FCCP, Internal Medicine, Chief Medical Officer - CannaWay Clinic Inc.
Dr. Glazer is the Chief Medical Officer at CannaWay Clinic. He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Critical Care Medicine and Obesity Medicine as well as a specialist in Sleep Disorders. He is a member of the Ontario Bariatric Network and serves as Vice President of the Canadian Association of Bariatric Physicians and Surgeons.
Jessica GroteProject Consultant - J&K Consulting
Project Consultant - J&K Consulting
Since 2016, Jessica Grote is working for J & K Consulting, a company that advises the pharmaceutical industry for more than 20 years. With her background in biological sciences, together with the company’s long time experience with regard to pharmaceutical regulations, it was the best starting point for joining the medicinal cannabis consulting part of the company and taking over the leadership in this field. Together with other companies J&K Consulting founded the first German-Canadian Cannabis Network for improving research and technologies this year.
Crystal CarsonEntrepreneur & Media Personality
Entrepreneur & Media Personality
Crystal Carson is a recognized entrepreneur and connector. Operating at the intersection of creativity and commerce she leverages her ability to build bridges amongst diverse industries. Her invaluable expertise seamlessly matches interests with opportunity. There is a fine sense of harmony, and contagious energy in everything that she does whether facilitating change, leading the team, building a brand, or connecting the right people.
Robert P. Picardinterim Vice-President Technical Services and QA, Aphria Inc.
Robert P. Picard
interim Vice-President Technical Services and QA, Aphria Inc.
Mr. Picard is an executive in management and consulting with over 35 years of experience in a variety positions in the pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device industries. His strengths have been leadership in delivering projects areas such as complex Project Management and new Facility Construction Management, Commissioning and Qualification, QA, Value Engineering, solution implementation, cost reductions, quality harmonization, change management, risk management, and continuous improvement. Having worked in highly regulated industries, Mr. Picard thoroughly understands the ins and outs of how to manage multi-variate projects and tasks that are under substantial constraints. This strength is especially useful in converting existing non-GMP spaces to Cannabis GMP for the EU markets.
Gregor ZornCo-Founder, European Cannabinoid Therapy Association
Co-Founder, European Cannabinoid Therapy Association
Gregor Zorn is the co-founder of the European Cannabinoid Therapy Association (ECTA) and one of the teachers at the first European Medicinal Cannabis post-graduate educational course, at Padua University Medical School in Italy. He is a teacher at the Masterclass Medicinal Cannabis, a member of the International Association for Cannabinoid Medicines (IACM) and a founding member, author and scientific advisor to Zbudimo.se
He is a biologist, researcher and consultant, on a mission to educate people about the therapeutic applications of medical cannabis. He is an international speaker specialized in teaching people about all aspects of cannabinoids and their role in health and disease.
After getting his Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the Biotechnical University of Ljubljana, he specialized in nutrition and got interested in holistic approaches to health. This led him to the discovery of cannabis and its therapeutic potential completely took over his research. He is a medical cannabis educator on a mission, to teach people about the endocannabinoid system, its importance in our health and the potential therapeutic role phytocannabinoids can have. He is also a cannabinoid therapy consultant, helping patients with the implementation of personalized holistic cannabinoid therapies for specific aliments.
Stephen MurphyManaging Director & Co-Founder, Prohibition Partners
Managing Director & Co-Founder, Prohibition Partners
Stephen is Managing Director & Co-Founder of Prohibition
Partners, the leading source of intelligence and insights into the
European cannabis industry. As a cannabis specialist focused on
developing the legal European cannabis industry, Stephen is a
Co-Founder of European Cannabis Holdings, Europe’s cannabis
investment group and Cannabis Europa, Europe’s premier
medical cannabis conference. With a background is in
technology, digital media and corporate finance, Stephen works
with investors, entrepreneurs and regulators to identify, qualify
and maximise the opportunities in this emerging frontier.
Profs Bruno BottaHead of the Department of Chemistry and Technologies of Drugs , Sapienza University, Rome
Profs Bruno Botta
Head of the Department of Chemistry and Technologies of Drugs , Sapienza University, Rome
Bruno Botta is full professor of Chemistry. In November 2014, he was nominated Deputy Provost for the Internationalization. Since 2011, he is Head of the Department of Chemistry and Technology of Drugs at Sapienza University of Rome. Since 2015, he is Chair of the Cost Action CM-1407 “Challenging organic syntheses inspired by nature – from natural products chemistry to drug discovery”. In 2012, he cofounded the Molecular Links Rome (MoLiRom s.r.l.), a spin-off Company of Sapienza University of Rome involved in the synthesis, extraction and production of bioactive substances of natural origin and protein-based products. His research interest during the years has been focused on the structural elucidation and synthesis of biologically active compounds derived from living plants. Since 20 years, he has been working on the field of plant tissue cultures in combination with chemistry-directed toward the understanding of biosynthetic pathways of the compounds under investigation. During the years, some plant enzymes (such as those belonging to the peroxidases family) derived from the above-mentioned cell cultures have been isolated and purified and some kinetic studies have been performed too. During the last 15 years, Prof. Botta also focused his attention on both the synthesis and host-guest studies of artificial receptors of the resorcarenes family. During the last 7 years, he focused his attention on the Hedgehog (Hh) signalling pathway which plays a pivotal role in the initiation, proliferation, invasion and metastasis of various cancers (inter alia medulloblastoma). He is author of 173 publications, including 10 patents (4 national and 6 international – USA and Europe), and, besides that, he is author and co-author of 10 books. For the Italian publishing house Edi-Ermes he edited 2 text books of Organic Chemistry.
DR. ZEID MOHAMEDALIChief Medical Officer, Zenabis Global
DR. ZEID MOHAMEDALI
Chief Medical Officer, Zenabis Global
Dr. Zeid Mohamedali joined Zenabis Global as the Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Mohamedali, his grad students, and his research team are responsible for several science research projects, clinical trials, education, and policy reviews for medical use of cannabis. He currently serves as the Chairman of the Board for the Journal of Cannabinoid Medicine.
Dr. Mohamedali is also an active consulting urological surgeon at several hospitals in British Columbia, Canada with over 20 years of experience in medical research and clinical practice specializing in pain management, oncology and urological diseases. A Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, Dr. Zeid is board certified in Urology by the Medical Council of Canada (FRCSC). He received his MD and PhD degrees from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia. He has been certified in physician leadership under the Sauder School of Business leadership MBA program. Dr. Zeid holds a position as a Clinical Assistant Professor in the department of Urological Sciences, UBC. He has authored a number of basic science papers in peer-reviewed journals in the topic of aging and cancer, cancer detection methods, and cell biology processes. He holds 3 patents for medical devices in healthcare and continues to work on newer devices for pain management in patients.
He has been the medical Director of Urodynamix Inc, Protox Therapeutics, Kalgene, Bench2Benside Research Inc, and Vancouver Skin Rejuvenation Centers. Dr. Mohamedali serves as a medical or scientific advisor to several pharmaceutical companies including Pfizer, Astellas Pharma, J&J (Janssen), Abbvie Corp, Astrazeneca, TerSera Canada, Amgen, Cook Medical, Bayer, Lilly, and Allergan. He has received numerous awards and honours for his research from the American Urological Association, Canadian Cancer Society, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and Medical Research Council of Canada.
Dr. Mohamedali has over 8 years of Medical Cannabis pain management. He has a large practice of patients with chronic pain, insomnia, anxiety, gastrointestinal disease, and other ailments. Previously, Zeid was the CEO for Greenleaf Medical Clinics, clinics dedicated to providing high quality medical cannabis care for patients with various ailments requiring cannabis treatment. He continues to be an active clinician in cannabis medicine. He is currently involved in cannabis research for migraines and pelvic pain; he is also an investigator in a phase 4 clinical trial in narcotic and benzodiazepine reduction using cannabis.
Julian WilchesChief Regulatory Officer & CoFounder, Clever Leaves
Chief Regulatory Officer & CoFounder, Clever Leaves
Julian has held posts of leadership and great responsibility with proven results in both public and private sectors. He is highly experienced in drug policy design, implementation and in pointing out the future agenda of this issue in Colombia. Specialized and expert in drug policy, international cooperation and interagency coordination.
Currently Julian is Clever Leaves’ Chief Regulatory Officer. In this position Julian is in charge of structuring and maintaining the company’s relationship strategies and policies with different stakeholders of interest, including governments, regulators and communities. Among his objectives, was to obtain all possible licenses for the use of cannabis for medical and scientific purposes, according to the Colombian regulation, objective that is now complete and has opened the doors for Clever Leaves to fully access the industry’s potential.
Prior to Clever Leaves, he performed as Deputy Director of Interagency Coordination at the Attorney General of the Nation’s office. In that position he improved the efficiency of the Criminal Adversarial System in Colombia, developed better coordination of the entities involved in it, embodied in specific projects with objective control of their impact. Also, he was responsible for the standardization and formalization of institutional relations of the Organization, with over 30 entities of the Executive, the Judiciary, the private sector, civil society and multilateral organizations.
Between 2011 and 2014 Julian acted as Director of Drug Policy for the Colombian Ministry of Justice and Law. Among his responsibilities, he advised the President of the Republic in peace talks carried out with the guerrilla movement FARC, regarding solutions to the drug production problem in Colombia. He also defined public health and human rights as pillars of the drug policy in Colombia and updated the evidence on the different stages of drugs and created the Advisory Commission on Drug Policy in Colombia.
Julian has been also a consultant and advisor for the Colombian Ministry of Justice and Law, the Cultural Secretariat of Bogota, the Chamber of Commerce of Bogotá, the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, the Colombian Institute for Rural Development – Incoder, the Coordination of the Culture of Lawfulness Project – NSIC, Advisor for the Presidential Program against Illicit Crops, and Advisor for the Ministry of Culture.
Julian, who received medals and recognitions for his contributions to create a better drug policy in Colombia, has a Major in Political Science from Los Andes University (Bogotá, Colombia) and a Master in Journalism from Alcalá de Henares University (Madrid, Spain).
Nick PaterasManaging Director - Europe, Materia
Managing Director - Europe, Materia
Nick Pateras is Managing Director, Europe at Materia Ventures, where he oversees Materia’s commercial strategy and operations. Materia Ventures is a manufacturer and distributor of medical cannabis and CBD products across the burgeoning European market.
Previously, Nick served as Vice President, Strategy at Lift & Co., Canada’s leading cannabis education and insights platform. An early stage employee, he helped scale the company to over sixty people, including a go-public transaction on the TSXV and securing numerous government contracts.
Prior to his time in cannabis, Nick spent several years in the pharmaceutical sector with Johnson & Johnson Inc, managing various category-leading OTC and Health & Beauty businesses. His background in healthcare led him to make the professional move into cannabis, having long advocated for recognition of its many medical applications.
Andrew GrieveCEO, Zenabis
Andrew Grieve is the CEO of Zenabis Global Inc. He is an experienced financial executive, entrepreneur, principal investor, and officer in the Canadian Armed Forces. In his role as CEO, he has successfully developed the company’s strategy as it strives to become one of the largest licensed producers of medical and adult-use cannabis in Canada. Andrew continues to propel the growth of Zenabis with the help of his extensive experience in organizational leadership and the execution of complex transactions.
Dr. Orna DreazenThe chair of Nextage Cannabis Innovation Ltd
Dr. Orna Dreazen
The chair of Nextage Cannabis Innovation Ltd
Dr. Orna Dreazen holds a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the Weizmann Institute of Science. Her postdoctoral studies were completed at the University of California in Los Angeles. In 1994 she received a diploma in Business Administration from the Tel Aviv University. Dreazen served in key positions in the industry, as well as in the public service. Between 1994 and 2000, she was the General Director of the National Public Health Laboratories of the Ministry of Health and from 2000 to 2008 she served as the General Director of the Israel Laboratory Accreditation Authority. In this capacity, she was involved in many international activities, including taking an active role as a member of the Board of Directors of the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC), The Arrangement Committee Chairperson, representing ILAC in ISO and WHO, and The Bureau International Poids and Measures (BIPM) managing the metrology, weights and measures around the world. Dr. Dreazen is an expert in Quality and Metrology and was the Chairperson of the Israel Society of Metrology.
From 2009 she serves as the CEO and Chair of Nextar chemphrma solutions LTd. And its subsidiary Nextage cannabis innovations LTD.
GILAD LIVNIChief Genetics Engineer, CPTM
Chief Genetics Engineer, CPTM
Gilad is a master grower and breeder, with years of experience in the production of high-grade medical cannabis. His strains and products have been supplied to patients, hospitals and clinical trials throughout Israel, since 2008.
Gilad works as a senior consultant and breeder with numerous cannabis producers, manufacturers and biotech companies both in Israel and around the globe.
He is a lecturer at the Technion University in Haifa, the Sapir University in Ashkelon and the IDC College in Herzelia, as well as being a keynote speaker in various conferences around the globe.
Gilad recently joined the CPTM team in Malta, as Chief Genetics Engineer.
Alex BrooksHead of European cannabis research, Canaccord Genuity
Head of European cannabis research, Canaccord Genuity
Alex is an experienced public capital markets professional. He has worked in buy-side and sell-side research roles across the London market for more than two decades, with institutions including JPMorgan, UBS and Canaccord Genuity, and has been involved with multiple industries and geographies. He is the leading analyst on the emerging European cannabis opportunity, having published on this nascent sector since August 2018. Canaccord is the largest broker and advisor to the cannabis industry worldwide and has worked with all of the major Canadian LPs.
Rick BrarCEO and Chairperson, Brains Bioceutical Corp.
CEO and Chairperson, Brains Bioceutical Corp.
Rick is a successful entrepreneur that has launched multiple ventures across the globe in several different industries. He currently serves as the CEO and Chair of Brains Bioceutical Corp., a global manufacturer and distributor of pharmaceutical grade cannabinoids. Prior to this, Rick was a co-founder and former CEO of Zenabis Global Inc., a leading Canadian LP with operations in medical and recreational cannabis. Zenabis grew from a privately held LP to a public company under Rick’s leadership. Over the years, he has also been active in trying to improve cannabis access through his involvement in Health Canada’s ACPMR Stakeholder Roundtable for the Cannabis Act as well as the Centre for Medical Cannabis and the Conservative Drug Policy Reform Group.
Ron LibskyCo-Founder & Managing Director, MGC Pharmaceuticals
Michael GarbuzCo-Founder and President of Materia Ventures
Co-Founder and President of Materia Ventures
Michael Garbuz is the the co-founder and President of Materia Ventures, a leading global manufacturer and supplier of cannabis and CBD products. He is also the co-founder and chairman of High12 Brands, a CPG cannabis brands company.
Prior to these companies, Michael held a corporate strategy and legal counsel role with Origin House (CSE:OH) (formerly, CannaRoyalty) and was a founding shareholder and advisor of Trichome Financial (TSXV:TFC). Prior to joining Origin House, Michael worked in the business law group at Cassels Brock & Blackwell, helping to build out the country’s top cannabis practice group.
In addition to being a frequent speaker and panelist, Michael regularly appears as a media commentator on television, print, and radio.
Luca McCannChief Scientific Officer, Canndelta
Chief Scientific Officer, Canndelta
Dr. Lucas C. McCann is the Chief Scientific Officer, and co-founder of CannDelta Inc. where he leads all science-based projects within the scope of the existing cannabis framework. As a Canadian cannabis regulatory consultant, Lucas specializes in specifics pertaining to cannabis extraction techniques, theory, and laboratory set-up. Lucas provides direction to clients on scientific and business strategy, aspects of security, as well as oversight on construction particulars as it relates to cannabis facility design and the regulations. Prior to CannDelta, Lucas worked as a Chemist for the Controlled Substances branch at Health Canada, the same regulatory body that regulates cannabis within Canada’s framework.
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