Health: White smoke? Revised plans for cannabis legalization

A maximum of three plants on the window sill, a maximum of 25 grams for personal use and associations for the collective cultivation of weed - this could be the first step in the legalization of cannabis in Germany that the traffic light is aiming for.

Health: White smoke? Revised plans for cannabis legalization

A maximum of three plants on the window sill, a maximum of 25 grams for personal use and associations for the collective cultivation of weed - this could be the first step in the legalization of cannabis in Germany that the traffic light is aiming for.

Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) and Agriculture Minister Cem Özdemir (Greens) want to present revised plans for this in Berlin today. "The legalization of cannabis: it's coming," Lauterbach wrote in advance on Twitter. But it will probably not be as far-reaching as originally planned by the traffic light coalition.

Politicians in the coalition were nevertheless pleased that something is now moving. "A belated Easter egg is in the hemp nest!" tweeted Green health politician Kirsten Kappert-Gonther. "Finally!" wrote the drug policy spokeswoman for the FDP parliamentary group, Kristine Lütke. She was "very excited".

In their coalition agreement, the SPD, Greens and FDP agreed to introduce the "controlled sale of cannabis to adults for recreational purposes in licensed shops". There are such cannabis shops in some states of the USA. In October, Lauterbach, as the responsible minister - who himself was originally against cannabis legalization - submitted proposals for this (key points). Since then, supporters have been waiting for a draft law.

The matter is legally difficult: from the outset there were concerns that the traffic light project could fail or be slowed down by international and EU law. For example, the states of the Schengen area have committed themselves in the "Schengen Implementation Agreement" to "prohibiting the illegal export of narcotics of all kinds, including cannabis products, as well as the sale, procurement and delivery of these funds by administrative and criminal means".

New key points probably not so far-reaching

Lauterbach said in mid-March that he had received very good feedback on the project from the EU Commission. But the SPD party executive recently came to the conclusion: "For reasons of European law, comprehensive legalization is obviously not feasible in the short term." The new key points that are to be presented today are therefore not as far-reaching as the original ones, according to everything that has been leaked in advance, but not yet confirmed:

A maximum of 30 grams of "pleasure cannabis" for personal consumption should be exempt from punishment. That was the original plan. Now, according to information from the editorial network Germany (RND), it should be 25 grams. "Three female flowering plants per adult person" should be allowed in home cultivation. The three plants from the original draft are expected to remain. The drug was originally intended to be legal for those over 18 to buy in cannabis shops ("licensed specialty shops") or possibly pharmacies. That was at the core of Traffic Light's legalization plans. However, this project is now likely to be dropped and with it the plan to set up a "state-controlled supply chain" from cultivation to delivery to sale. According to various reports, distribution in licensed shops is only planned with scientific support in regional model projects. However, this would raise the question of how cannabis tourism should be prevented within Germany. So-called cannabis social clubs could represent a kind of intermediate step towards free sale. The SPD board of directors had also spoken out in favor of this: "For us, the so-called Cannabis Social Clubs (CSC) are a central component of legalization". In such associations, members could supply themselves with cannabis products from their own cultivation. According to dpa information, a maximum of 25 grams at a time and a maximum of 50 grams per month could be given to club members. Non-members cannot get cannabis.

Expectations are rather subdued today

The cannabis industry has long been hoping for a boom through possible legalization in Germany: from manufacturers of cannabis oil vaporizers to companies specializing in seeds and greenhouse lighting to manufacturers of cannabis-based medicines, many are hoping for good ones Businesses.

The expectations were rather subdued in advance: You first have to evaluate the details of the traffic light plans and see whether investment decisions would be possible and the black market could be noticeably pushed back, said Jürgen Neumeyer, from the cannabis industry association of the dpa.

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