Who is the white lion?

Cornel van der Watt

With over 28 years of experience in cannabis breeding and cultivation across the globe, Cornel van der Watt has been at the forefront of the cannabis movement in South Africa. He is unsurpassed in his knowledge of all aspects of the industry and his connections in the global community.

Every path he has walked in his professional and personal life has led him back to the cannabis industry, from his qualification in chemical engineering, experience in chemical glassblowing, expertise in cultivation locally and abroad, and studies in tissue cultivation, cloning and genetics, to his community upliftment work, training and consulting.

While Cornel has become a scientist, geneticist, businessman and CEO, at the heart of his consultancy lies his deep and spiritual connection with the cannabis plant.   

Cornel's Career highlights

  • Assisted with initial research and development in the South African cannabis industry.  
  • Consulted, set up and managed the first legal cannabis grow in Lesotho, which grew to a billion-rand industry within a year.  
  • Consulted in multiple grow operations in the USA.  
  • Advised to the Australian cannabis industry and assisted with research and development. 
  • Performed strain breeding and genetic sourcing for major European seedbanks.
  • Perfected distillation processes to isolate and purify specific cannabinoids.
  • Given assistance in cannabis product development and formulation.
  • Sourced offtake markets for cannabis oil and related products.
  • Assisted with white labelling of products.
  • Worked with the best extraction specialists in the cannabis industry to develop super fluid extractors to handle large volumes on industrial and commercial scale.
  • Been named the preferred master grower for Medigrow Africa, a collective that produces international medical-grade cannabis products for global distribution. 
  • Founded his own distribution company, White Lion Holdings, which supplies award-winning seeds and leading brands of fertilizer, grow lights and extractors.
  • Attended and presented at international and local conferences and trade shows.

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