Switzerland Proceeds with Regulation of Cannabis Industry

High Times

According to Switzerland’s government agency in charge of public health and welfare, cannabis should no longer be banned but rather comprehensively regulated. As a result, the National Council now has the task of creating said framework and for an integrated medical and recreational infrastructure. The first city to kick off this enchilada of cannabis will be the country’s largest and its capital of Zurich. There are several issues at play here beyond regulating the industry at a national leve—a task in truth that has only been achieved by two countries to date (Uruguay and Canada). Switzerland is backing into all of this with a country-wide trial.  This is deliberately limited to 5,000 study participants per canton, but it will begin to create a “state-by-state” organization for the industry to grow. Such participants will have to show that they are already cannabis users. This should not be hard to do. About a third of the Swiss population has admitted that they have smoked cannabis at some point. About 200,000 admit to smoking regularly. Cities will be able to conduct scientific studies—both on the economic impacts of a new industry as well as the impact of recreational cannabis sales (and accessibility) on a local level. Local manufacturers must obtain a production permit from the Federal Office of Public Health to ensure quality standards. Participants will be able to purchase cannabis from both pharmacies and social clubs. Shutterstock What is the Significance of this Development for Switzerland? Right now, there are three pending adult use markets in Europe. This includes Luxembourg, which has now decided to move forward more or less on schedule to create the same and Portugal, which is still in the process of deciding how to do that at a legislative level. Then there is Holland, which is also a…

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