• Albanian government presents second law draft for cannabis legalisation

    The total area allowed for the cultivation of the cannabis plant for medical purposes cannot be greater than 150 hectares at the national level
    Euractiv (Europe)
    Friday, October 7, 2022

    albania cannabis flagThe second draft of a law on cultivating and processing cannabis for medicinal and industrial purposes has been put forward by the Albanian government, bringing the plant another step closer to at least partial legalisation. Albania has a long reputation for being one of the biggest producers and exporters of cannabis, as well as having extensive gang networks in Europe. But now, the government wants to legalise the herb and reap the tax and investment benefits. In July, a first draft was proposed under which licenses will be granted for 15 years with a right of renewal. The new draft states that those applying to cultivate medicinal cannabis must hold another similar license in an OECD country and a Good Manufacturing Practice from the European Medicines Agency or Food and Drug Administration.

  • Amsterdam mayor wants Europe to decriminalize cocaine: “War on drugs isn’t working

    ‘By criminalising the supply and the demand, we are only helping the criminal market,’ said Halsema
    NL Times (Netherlands)
    Friday, October 7, 2022

    femke halsemaAmsterdam mayor Femke Halsema believes that Europe should decriminalize the sale of cocaine, like various countries already allow the sale of cannabis. “But I am a realist and know that there is too little political support for such measures,” she said at the opening of a congress on organized crime organized by Justice Minister Dilan Yeşilgöz-Zegerius and attended by multiple European institutions and Belgium, France, Germany, Italy and Spain. She thinks countries need to look at drug use differently. “Let us face the facts: the war on drugs isn’t working. Seizing drugs is not working. And cocaine regulation isn’t in the picture either. I hope we can agree that we need to formulate an alternative strategy,” Halsema said. (See also: Ministers say legalising drugs won’t deter crime; new cooperation might)

  • Biden pardons thousands convicted of marijuana possession under federal law

    The move represents a fundamental change in America’s response to a drug that has been at the center of a clash between culture and policing for more than a half-century
    The New York Times (US)
    Thursday, October 6, 2022

    us flag cannabis capitolPresident Biden pardoned thousands of people convicted of marijuana possession under federal law and said his administration would review whether marijuana should still be in the same legal category as drugs like heroin and LSD. The pardons will clear everyone convicted on federal charges of simple possession since it became a crime in the 1970s. Officials said full data was not available but noted that about 6,500 people were convicted of simple possession between 1992 and 2021, not counting legal permanent residents. The pardons will also affect people who were convicted under District of Columbia drug laws; officials estimated that number to be in the thousands. Biden urged governors to follow his lead for people convicted on state charges of simple possession, who vastly outnumber those charged under federal laws.

  • Morocco grants first authorizations for legal cannabis industry

    The first cooperatives will now be allowed to legally produce cannabis in Morocco
    Morocco World News (Morocco)
    Wednesday, October 5, 2022

    morocco cannabis farmerThe Cannabis Activities Regulatory Agency (ANRAC), a brand new organization to regulate the legal cultivation of cannabis, issued ten permits for processing and manufacturing cannabis in Morocco. The agency also granted permission to market and export cannabis and its derivatives for medical, pharmaceutical, and industrial purposes. According to a statement issued by ANRAC on October 4, this measure is part of the execution of Law 13-21 on the legal uses of this plant. Following the issuance of the first batch of authorizations, ANRAC will begin authorizing farmers to legally cultivate and produce cannabis within a tightly regulated framework of agricultural cooperatives.

  • Au Maroc, les cultivateurs de chanvre placent leurs espoirs dans le cannabis thérapeutique

    Alors que les revenus agricoles liés au haschich ont drastiquement chuté ces dernières années, une loi encadrant son usage industriel et médical pourrait changer la donne
    Le Monde (France)
    Mercredi, 5 octobre 2022

    morocco cannabis azilaAu pied du mont Tidghine, plus haut sommet du massif du Rif, dans le nord du Maroc, le village d’Azila est couvert de plantations de cannabis, prêt à être récolté. Mais les temps sont durs pour les cultivateurs locaux, dont l’activité, tolérée bien qu’officiellement interdite, pâtit de la concurrence du chanvre produit en Europe et de « lenteurs » dans la mise en œuvre d’une loi adoptée en 2021 légalisant le cannabis thérapeutique. « On reste attachés à cette plante et pourtant elle ne nous rapporte plus rien. Plus personne n’en veut ! », se désole Souad*, cultivatrice de chanvre à Azila, dans la commune de Ketama. « On est loin des années fastueuses. On vivote dans des conditions difficiles ». (Voir aussi: Maroc : les nouveaux rois du Rif)

  • Zurich puts off recreational pot smoking trial

    The Swiss health authorities have forced a delay of a trial with cannabis in Switzerland's largest city, due to start in the next few weeks
    Swissinfo (Switzerland)
    Wednesday, October 5, 2022

    The Zurich city council and the university of Zurich announced that the sale of cannabis products from pharmacies and social clubs under controlled conditions would only start in the first half of next year. The Federal Office of Public Health had not yet given its final approval to the project, Zuri Can - Cannabis with Responsibility, due to the "complexity of the project with its different reference points". Without this approval, however, those responsible for the study are not allowed to start growing hemp. And because no cannabis can be cultivated during the winter months, the start of sales is now postponed to the first half of 2023.

  • California’s illicit marijuana market thrives as much of the state continues to restrict sales

    California recorded more than $5.2 billion in sales in 2021, according to the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration
    The Sacramento Bee (US)
    Tuesday, October 4, 2022

    california cannabisIn 2016, Californians voted to legalize recreational adult-use marijuana. Proponents of Proposition 64, including then-Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, argued that it would generate massive revenue, while decreasing illicit cannabis and drug cartel activity in California. Now, nearly six years later, it’s clear that promise has not been kept. While the state has collected billions in tax revenue from cannabis sales since legalization went into effect in 2018, billions more continue to pour into a thriving illicit market. A new report from cannabis website Leafly found that more than half of all cannabis sales in the state (55%) are in the illegal market. It means the product being sold hasn’t been subjected to the state’s rigorous testing and tracking regimen, and can contain harmful pesticides or other powerful narcotics.

  • Amsterdam council to vote against banning tourists from coffeeshops

    The largest party would not support the measure in the end because there were not ‘sufficient guarantees’ that the city would act to reduce street dealing and police the streets
    Dutch News (Netherlands)
    Friday, September 30, 2022

    Amsterdam council will vote against a proposal to enforce a national ban against tourists in coffeeshops, where cannabis is smoked. Mayor Femke Halsema formally proposed temporarily banning non-residents from the city’s 166 coffeeshops in April, in a 13-page briefing. This is already a national law, enforced in some places, but Amsterdam had negotiated a formal exemption. At a long debate in the city hall, the majority of parties were against the policy. Although the mayor, who is responsible for law and order, does not need to have the support of the elected council, she has said that she wants this before enforcing a national law that already exists, the so-called i-criterium. (See also: Amsterdam considers banning ‘cannabis tourists’ from its coffee shops)

  • Legal marijuana, but Uruguayans still prefer black market

    Only 27 percent of Uruguayan consumers buy their drugs through approved channels, a figure that reaches 39 percent when taking into account sharing with friends
    RTL Today / AFP (Luxembourg)
    Friday, September 30, 2022

    uruguay csc cultivoIn 2013, Uruguay became the first country in the world to legalize recreational marijuana -- which came into effect four years later -- permitting its sale in pharmacies, a move that helped to push many drug traffickers out of the domestic market. But a bland and insufficient state supply has meant most consumers still prefer the diversity of the black market. There are three legal ways for registered users to get hold of marijuana: purchasing it at pharmacies, through home growing for personal use, and by belonging to an official cannabis club. The most sought after legal method is membership of one of the 249 consumer clubs, which offer a greater variety to their 7,166 members than pharmacies. But many clubs have long waiting lists as they are limited by law to between 15 and 45 members.

  • German SPD representatives confident a solution to international legal hurdles will be found

    One of the key discussion points of the session was the recently highlighted potential breaches of European law
    Business Cann
    Thursday, September 29, 2022

    germany flag cannabisEarlier this month news broke of recent analysis conducted by the Bundestag’s scientific service suggested the creation of a legal recreational cannabis market could contravene a number of European treaties which Germany had signed. While many commentators were quick to point out that this was nothing new, the news reinvigorated debate and scrutiny surrounding the progress of Germany’s ambitious cannabis project following a period of relative radio silence from the Government. Days later, two members of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) made the unusual step of hosting an Instagram Live session to provide insight on how discussions were developing within their party, one of the three that form the German coalition government. 

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