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Cannabis becomes legal in Germany, a small revolution

  • April 1, 2024
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Germany has just legalized the sale of cannabis for all adults

Germany is changing its approach to cannabis consumption this Monday. After Malta in 2021 and Luxembourg last year, the largest country in the EU to legalize the recreational use of this drug, a reform which raises as many expectations as fears.

Possession of 25 grams of dried cannabis is now authorized in public places, as well as cultivation at home, up to 50 g and three plants per adult. An approach diametrically opposed to that of France and different from that of the Netherlands, where the consumption of hashish is not legal but tolerated, in particular through “coffee shops”.

At midnight, the time of the first “legal” joints, several hundred people celebrated the change in law in plumes of smoke in front of the emblematic Brandenburg Gate, in the heart of Berlin.

Paradoxically, you will have to wait another three months in Germany to legally buy drugs through a “Cannabis Social Club”. Hence the warning in the meantime from Georg Wurth, representative of the German Hemp Federation: despite legalization “the consumer must not tell the police where he bought his cannabis” in the event of an inspection.

The situation will therefore really change on July 1 with the clubs. These non-profit associations will be able to sell to their members a maximum of 25 grams per day and no more than 50 grams per month. These clubs, a sort of shared cannabis garden, will be able to cultivate the drug on land outside, in a greenhouse, in an uninhabited building. Controlled at least once a year by the authorities, each association will be able to accommodate, in return for a contribution, a maximum of 500 people who have been residing in Germany for at least 6 months.

According to the government, the new legislation, ardently desired by environmentalists and liberals in the coalition of Social Democratic Chancellor Olaf Scholz, should make it possible to fight more effectively against trafficking. Believing that the policy of prohibition has failed, Health Minister Karl Lauterbach regularly argues that countries like Canada, which have implemented legalization, have been able to reduce the black market.

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