• Cannabis policy needs to be monitored for health impact - EU drugs agency

    Cannabis remained the most commonly used illicit drug in Europe in 2021
    Times of Malta (Malta)
    Saturday, July 1, 2023

    cannabis europaEuropean countries that are widening their cannabis policies should invest in monitoring and evaluation to understand the impact on public health and safety, according to the European Drug Report for 2023 issued by the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA). Cannabis remained the most commonly used drug in Europe in 2021, with around eight per cent (22.6 million) of adults estimated to have used cannabis “in the last year”. Malta legislated for home growing and use in private, alongside non-profit communal growing clubs, for recreational purposes. Germany and Luxembourg are planning to permit home growing. The Netherlands is piloting a model for a closed cannabis supply chain for cannabis coffee shops and Czechia has announced plans for a regulated and taxed distribution system.

  • Luxembourg legalises cultivation and consumption of cannabis at home

    Fines for consumption outdoors
    RTL Today (Luxembourg)
    Thursday, June 29, 2023

    luxembourg cannabisIt's official: Luxembourg deputies greenlit a bill that allows for limited cannabis cultivation and consumption at home. 38 deputies voted in favour of the bill, with 22 against. The parties DP, LSAP, Déi Gréng, déi Lénk and ADR had announced in advance that they were in clear favour of bill 8033. People will be able to cultivate up to four plants in their home or usual place of residence. Cannabis plants can only be grown from seed and must not be visible from public spaces. It remains prohibited for minors. Bill 8033 further stipulates penalties in relation to illegal cannabis possession. Anyone who consumes recreational cannabis or cannabis-derived products outside their home risks a fine of between €25 and €500. (See also: Everything you need to know about the new cannabis law)

  • State and city reach agreement to close down Pusher Street

    Christiania’s residents concede it is no longer something they can safely do without the help of the police
    The Copenhagen Post (Denmark)
    Tuesday, June 27, 2023

    denmark copenhagen pusher street crackdownPusher Street is no ordinary thoroughfare. For decades, it has housed numerous stalls selling cannabis to the public in open view. During that time, the state has been reasonably tolerant, but about a decade ago it ramped up its policing of the area. Since then, arrests of drug dealers have increased and cannabis buyers are often targeted as they leave the freetown. In the meantime, the local municipality has been waging its own war. Decriminalising the sale of cannabis, argues mayor Sophie Hæstop Andersen, would put many drug dealers out of business and lead to a fall in crime. It is a matter that the state and capital city rarely agree on … until yesterday. 

  • Cannabis: Study backs risk-led approach, France still pushing criminalisation

    The EMCDDA estimates that in Europe, 8% of 25-64 year-olds, or 22.5 million people, used cannabis in 2022
    Euractiv (Europe)
    Friday, June 23, 2023

    france cannabis2As a new European report pushes for greater communication of cannabis use risks, France is banking on a policy of prohibition, the effectiveness of which remains to be proven. Cannabis remains the most widely consumed illicit drug in the EU, according to the latest report from the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA). The report stresses the need for effective risk communication strategies to inform consumers “about the adverse health effects associated with new substances, drug-drug interactions and products with a high active ingredient content”. However, France is instead betting on a sanctions-based approach through strict legislation, where consumers risk not only a fine but prison time.

  • Legalise Cannabis makes united push for personal marijuana use in three Australian states

    The party’s bill allowing adults to possess and grow small quantities of the drug at home will be introduced across Victoria, NSW and WA
    The Guardian (UK)
    Monday, June 19, 2023

    australia cannabisLegalise Cannabis MPs in Australia are launching a coordinated push to make marijuana legal for personal use in three states and overhaul what the party says is outdated legislation that unnecessarily criminalises people. The party’s drug reform bill will be introduced in state parliaments in Victoria, New South Wales and Western Australia – the jurisdictions where it has representation in the state’s upper houses. Legalise Cannabis says it is the first time the same bill has been introduced across three states on the same day. The reform, which would allow adults to possess and grow small quantities of cannabis at home, is similar to ACT’s model that came into effect in 2020.

  • Cannabis clubs assured of receiving support from local banks

    The associations are the only way one can legally buy the drug
    Times of Malta (Malta)
    Friday, June 16, 2023

    malta cannabis flagThe cannabis authority in Malta has been assured that local banks will not turn down potential cannabis clubs on the grounds that they are selling marijuana, after the associations raised concerns that the industry could be deemed too risky. Leonid McKay, who heads the Authority for the Responsible Use of Cannabis, said the issue had been raised during discussions with various stakeholders, including banks and non-governmental organisations. These meetings resulted in feedback from informal contacts with banks that they would possibly refuse to open bank accounts for prospective cannabis clubs – dubbed Cannabis Harm Reduction Associations.

  • Parliament to vote on legalisation of home-grown cannabis this month

    Bill would allow adults to grow up to four plants and use cannabis products inside home
    Luxembourg Times (Luxembourg)
    Thursday, June 15, 2023

    luxembourg cannabisLuxembourg residents hoping to legally grow cannabis at home might not have to wait till after the elections, after Parliament announced it will vote before the end of the month on a bill calling for legalisation. The law will “have to be debated and voted on in public session during the week of June 26”, an article on the Parliament’s website said. The bill stipulates adults can legally grow up to four plants. The plants must not be visible from a public space and consumers must not use cannabis products outside their residence. People who hold, transport or acquire cannabis products for their personal use would be allowed to carry up to three grams. Violators would risk a fine of €251 to €2,500.

  • Legal but locked out

    The banking dilemma for Jamaican cannabis businesses
    Jamaica Observer (Jamaica)
    Wednesday, June 14, 2023

    jamaica flag ganja2As Jamaica continues to promote medicinal cannabis to attract investors and spur the industry's development, entrepreneurs face significant hurdles due to the fact that, while their businesses are legal, they are still not able to access the country's banking services. This creates substantial challenges from sourcing investors to securing credit, conducting commercial operations, operating efficiently and taking advantage of growth opportunities. The current status quo stems from the fact that in the United States cannabis is still illegal at the federal level, even though there are states in which it is legal. As a result, the banking system is hesitant to engage with cannabis companies because banks would likely find themselves at odds with federal law if they do so.

  • Thailand’s cannabis lovers face comedown amid legalisation U-turn

    Southeast Asian country’s booming cannabis industry is under a cloud as politicians reconsider decriminalisation
    Al Jazeera (Qatar)
    Friday, June 9, 2023

    thailand marijuana awakeningOne year after Thailand decriminalised cannabis, Thailand’s Ganja TV, a Facebook page with 90,000-odd followers, are looking on as rival politicians threaten to make dispensaries and open consumption illegal once more – or at least tightly controlled. At the centre of attention is Pita Limjaroenrat, the prime minister-in-waiting whose Move Forward Party (MPF) scored an upset to come first place in last month’s general elections. While MFP is viewed as the most liberal of Thailand’s political parties, cannabis advocates say it is leading the drive to rein in recreational use, casting a pall over the country’s cannabis industry. Pita says the cannabis boom should be put on pause to curb widespread recreational use until the incoming government can pass a proposed Cannabis Act.

  • 26 applications for cannabis clubs received so far - no licences granted yet

    New guidelines on responsible cannabis use launched
    Times of Malta (Malta)
    Thursday, June 8, 2023

    Leonid McKayThe cannabis authority has received 26 applications from potential cannabis clubs requesting a licence to sell home-grown marijuana, according to Leonid McKay who heads the Authority for the Responsible Use of Cannabis. “Let me make this clear. Just because we have 26 applications, it does not mean we will be granting 26 licences. There will be a rigorous vetting process,” McKay said. He was not in a position to give a date when the first licences will start being issued due to the detailed vetting process involved. McKay was addressing a press conference held to launch new guidelines on the responsible use of cannabis. (See also: No timeline yet for 26 entities seeking cannabis association license)

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