Cannabis. The word automatically makes you think of joints, getting high and Dutch coffee shops. But Becanex, a company on the Wageningen campus, processes cannabis into what it calls a tincture that makes you sleep well.
Becanex has now been going for three years. One of the company founders was Eral Osmanoglou, who graduated in Food Process Engineering 11 years ago. He developed and patented a special extraction technique for getting all the cannabinoids out of the cannabis plant. These are cannabis plants with little or no THC – which gets you stoned – but with useful cannabinoids such as CBD. This substance is widely used for pain relief, stress reduction and better sleep.
Cannabis tincture as a healthy alternative to sleep medication
Osmanoglou runs the company with Sebastian Kamphorst, from Germany, and they have set up a new extraction plant in Berlin. The company now has a turnover of 2.5 million euros, and its bottles of cannabis tincture can be found in retail chains such as Jumbo and Etos. It can be a healthy alternative to sleeping pills, says Osmanoglou.
Becanex is now working on a project with Renger Witkamp, professor of Nutrition and Pharmacology at WUR, to determine how many cannabinoids are effectively absorbed by the body . ‘We want to know that in order to determine the right doses.’
The company deliberately chose the combination of Berlin and Wageningen. ‘Berlin is the online marketing capital of Europe and Wageningen is the knowledge capital,’ says Osmanoglou. The company, which has an opium exemption, now also makes pharmaceutical ingredients with a lot of THC in them, for epileptic patients, for example.
There are about 100 companies on campus. We introduce you to them in Resource. This time, Becanex on the Wageningen campus.