Cannabis legalization

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On Friday, 23.02.24, the Bundestag approved the cannabis law presented by the traffic light government by a majority. The Bundesrat approved the recently controversial law on 22.03.24. The law is due to come into force on April 1st.

Current developments

Lauterbach's plans for legalization

In recent years, there have been several important developments in Germany towards cannabis legalization. A major player in the current debate on cannabis legalization in Germany is Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach, a prominent SPD politician and health expert. Lauterbach has repeatedly spoken out in favour of drug policy reform and has also brought up the legalization of cannabis.

In April 2023, Federal Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach and Federal Minister of Agriculture Cem Ă–zdemir present the 2-pillar model for cannabis legalization.

First pillar

The first pillar of the model provides for the personal cultivation of cannabis both in non-profit associations and privately. The aim is to move away from prohibitions and enable adults to obtain a legal supply of cannabis.

The associations or clubs may only supply the harvested cannabis to adult members, whereby a maximum of 25 grams per day and 50 grams per month is permitted. For adolescents aged 18 to 21, the supply is limited to 30 grams per month.

In addition, members may be offered seeds and cuttings for home cultivation, but a maximum of seven seeds or five cuttings per month. Private cultivation is also legalized, with a maximum of three plants permitted. The associations must meet strict requirements for the protection of minors and prevention and appoint youth protection officers, for example.

Second pillar

The second pillar of the model includes a regional pilot project that will be carried out in selected regions over a period of five years.

This will allow companies to produce, sell and distribute cannabis in licensed and state-controlled specialist stores, but only to adults.

This model will be scientifically monitored and evaluated in order to examine the effects on health and youth protection as well as the black market.

Backgrounds

In recent years, the legalization of cannabis has sparked an ongoing debate worldwide. Germany is no exception. The history of cannabis legalization in Germany is a fascinating journey marked by political, social and scientific developments. In this blog post, we take a look at the key milestones and events on the road to the current legislation.

The history of cannabis in Germany begins with its criminalization. The first prohibitions against the use of cannabis were issued in Germany in the 1920s. Under the influence of the international drug control treaties, cannabis was finally classified as an illegal drug in Germany in 1971.

The first discussions about a possible liberalization of cannabis in Germany began in the 1990s. Particularly in connection with the medical use of cannabis, voices were raised calling for a reassessment of drug policy. Despite these discussions, the legislation remained unchanged and cannabis remained illegal.

In the new millennium, the discussion about the medical use of cannabis gained momentum. In 2005, the German government allowed the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes for the first time under strict conditions. This was an important step that helped to raise awareness of the potential medical benefits of cannabis.

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