On Friday, Luxembourg’s government announced that citizens would be permitted to grow up to four cannabis plants on their property, making it Europe‘s first official country to legalize the production and consumption of cannabis, noted The Guardian.
The announcement follows Luxembourg’s government’s pursuit to provide fundamental changes towards the country’s perspective and view on recreational cannabis cultivation after failing to prohibit the drug. Now, people 18 and older are legally allowed to grow their own cannabis, up to four plants per household. Seeds received via trading are also deemed legal without having to specify the THC content. Luxembourg’s government also said that users could obtain seeds from shops, importation, or online purchases.
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In a press release, the new laws on domestic production and consumption “are the first step,” said Justice minister Sam Tanson. “We thought we had to act; we have an issue with drugs, and cannabis is the drug that is most used and is a large part of the illegal market,” she continued. “We want to start by allowing people to grow it at home. The idea is that a consumer is not in an illegal situation if he consumes cannabis and that we don’t support the whole illegal chain from production to transportation to selling, where there is a lot of misery attached. We want to do everything we can to get more and more away from the illegal black market.”
That said, the country’s government is still holding a few laws in place. These include the consumption of cannabis in public spaces, selling it, and transporting it. If someone is caught with up to three grams, they won’t be charged with a crime but a misdemeanor. If this is the case, fines are now reduced to 25 euros, a massive shift from the previous fine of 2,500 euros. “Above three grams, nothing changes, you will be considered a dealer,” Tanson stated. “Nothing changes for car drivers either: there is still zero tolerance.”
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The recent law change is a step in the right direction for the country to steer away from the illegal cannabis market. The government plans to implement a state-regulated production and distribution system to help users find quality and safe products. The majority of the revenue earned will help invest in “prevention, education, and healthcare in the broad field of addiction,” government sources added.
With the recent law change in mind, Luxembourg is now joining Canada, Uraguay, and eleven US states in steering away from the United Nations Convention on the control of narcotic drugs. The UN narcotic drug notion encourages countries to limit “exclusively for medical and scientific purposes the production, manufacture, export, import distribution, trade, employment and possession of drugs,” like cannabis.
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