ERP-Systems and the Cannabis Industry

ERP systems and cannabis. At first glance, these two things might not have much in common, but when you take a second look, they are a perfect match.

Picture of a cannabis plant

30. June 2022

Content Marketing Managerin

What is the current status of the cultivation and use of medical cannabis in Germany? In which areas may the substance be used? And how can Enterprise Resource Planning help cannabis companies? This blog post provides the answers to the most important questions.

Cannabis for medical purposes

The use of cannabis for medicinal purposes has been gaining traction in the past years. In 2017, a significant change occurred. Since that year, doctors in Germany have been allowed to prescribe medical cannabis. To do this, they must issue a narcotic prescription that can be filled at a pharmacy. As the cannabis is grown exclusively for medicinal purposes, it is classed as a prescription drug and is subject to the strict provisions of the Narcotic Drugs Act. Rather than having to source medical cannabis from foreign countries, since mid-2021, pharmacies have been able to obtain medical cannabis directly from Germany. The regulating body is the Cannabis Agency, part of the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices. Their duties include the monitoring of:

  • Controlled cultivation

  • Harvest

  • Processing

  • Quality Control

  • Storage

  • Packing

  • Dispensing to pharmacies

Grafik einer Cannabis Pflanze zur Herstellung medizinischer Produkte

Why does the cannabis agency exist?

Each member of the United Nations is required to establish or appoint a government agency as soon as cannabis is to be cultivated that is not for industrial purposes. This approach is based on the 1961 United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. The term "cannabis agency" as a subsidiary of the Federal Opium Agency has become established in this process and is now an integral part of the industry.

According to what specifications is medical cannabis produced?

From the first second, companies must make it possible to ensure the pharmaceutical quality of the cannabis or flowers, as well as the tracking of the flowers back to the mother plant. The following specifications are used for this purpose:

  • Good Agricultural and Collection Practice (GACP)
  • Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP)
  • Specifications of the monograph "Cannabis flowers" (DAB)

How do ERP Systems support companies in the cannabis industry?

Before delving separately into the possibilities of an ERP system for companies in the cannabis industry, it should be said that ERP systems can be advantageous for numerous industries. Ultimately, it makes little difference whether the company is in the medical industry or the toy sector - a good and, above all, suitable ERP solution potentially improves the processes of any company. The important thing is to make sure you don't choose just any ERP, but the right one.

It's the same in the cannabis industry: Companies use the numerous functions of an ERP solution to make their day-to-day work easier and, in the best case, even to (partially) automate it. The standard options of an ERP system are generally in the following areas:

  • Purchase and sale
  • Project Management
  • Production planning
  • Warehouse management
  • Controlling

That's all good. It's even better if you add more features to your ERP; ones that are specific to your industry.

Industry solutions

Customized industry solutions are designed to cover the requirements of specific industries. Because each industry has unique requirements - some of which are regulatory in nature - it is important to make sure you make the right choice. And what’s more - a good industry solution extends your ERP with the features that are relevant to you - but no more. Because the more extensive the possibilities, the more complex the handling of any software solution. Simplicity is the order of the day, because who wants unnecessarily complicated processes? The motto is simple: as much as necessary, as little as possible.

Another feature that a good industry solution (and therefore also a good ERP system) should have is intuitive operation. Of course, it’s possible to learn how to use less intuitive systems, but users much prefer systems that do the thinking for them. So you don’t have to worry about a new, unfamiliar system. At all.

The third advantage of choosing an industry solution is the extended options. Instead of connecting various stand-alone solutions to your ERP, you combine all the steps in one system. The following processes are particularly relevant to the cannabis industry:

  • Batch analyses and batch management
  • ERP Validation
  • Manufacturing
  • Shelf life and expiration control
  • Quality control
  • Supplier Management
  • Compliance guidelines
  • Audit trail and electronic signature

The right ERP for the cannabis industry

Optimize your processes in the cannabis industry with our ERP solution YAVEON ProBatch. Your key to successful digitalization and optimized operations.

Preview Picture ProBatch Whitepaper

Will you need consulting services?

This depends on how extensive the project is and the goals you have set. However, good advice is a must, even for the smallest ERP project. You might be thinking: "This is going to be expensive. Let’s cut back on the consulting services, install a good system, and we’ll do the rest ourselves." Honestly: Yes, it’s possible. In the long run, however, you will find that good advice pays off. Even the best ERP system, including an ideal industry solution, is only as good as its ability to meet your needs and the users' ability to use it. If you have the features that fit exactly to your needs, you will benefit from smoothly running business processes. Which enables you to achieve maximum automation - with time savings, reduced errors, and no more sleepless nights. There are only benefits when you and your colleagues use an optimized system. After all, why should you only scratch the surface of your ERP solution when you can use the full program?

What are the advantages?

Save time

You now handle your processes digitally with significantly less effort and much more automation. The result: From now on, you have more time to take care of your actual (and critical) daily business tasks. For more relaxed days, better results, and increased job satisfaction.

Fewer errors

Manual work generates errors. Not always, but regularly. You have to cope with distractions such as a constantly ringing phone, the ping of an incoming email, or a parcel being delivered while you are working from home. Digital, automated processes run stably and reliably - sources of error are reduced.

Teamwork

Who doesn't know the feeling of having to call a colleague for the umpteenth time and ask for the current order quantity - Excel is never up to date. But your ERP is. Rather than constantly disturbing and annoying your colleague, just take a look at the system. This simplifies work and improves collaboration - after all, everyone is working with the same data status.

Security and regulatory compliance

Industries such as the cannabis industry follow strict regulations because they involve active medical ingredients. If you rely on a validation-capable ERP with an industry solution, the requirements of the regulated environment are covered - and you can easily cope with even the toughest audit. By the way, the industry solution is optimized to the requirements of GMP, etc.

What is YAVEON ProBatch suitable for the cannabis industry?

YAVEON ProBatch extends the Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central ERP system with industry-specific functions - helpful for companies in the cannabis industry, for example.

These are just some of the many advantages of our ERP solution. Find out what else our ERP industry solution can do on our website.

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