Germany Trims Its Cannabis Legalization Plans
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The German government has trimmed down its incoming legal recreational cannabis program.
Originally, the plan was to license dispensaries and pharmacies to sell cannabis.
But in a press conference on April 12, the country’s health minister, Karl Lauterbach, announced that cannabis will instead be available via non-profit clubs, at least initially.
These clubs would permit 500 members (maximum) to grow cannabis for the members’ personal consumption. Individuals aged 21 or over would be allowed to buy up to 25 grams at a time, or up to 50 grams per month; those aged between 18 and 21 would be limited to 30 grams per month.
For-profit cannabis retail may be implemented in years to come, depending on the results of a series of regional cannabis experiments – also announced by Lauterbach – which will permit cannabis commerce, under strict controls, in certain areas of Germany. The details of these “five year-tests”, including which regions will be chosen, have yet to be decided.
During the press conference, Lauterbach divulged that the government’s proposed recreational cannabis program was revised following talks with the European Commission, an executive part of the European Union.
He stressed that the new plans still offer a substantial challenge to the illicit market.
“We are not creating a problem,” said Lauterbach, as translated by the Associated Press. “We are trying to solve a problem.”