NewsCzech Adult-Use Bill, Further Dutch Delays, Portuguese Police's Hemp...

Czech Adult-Use Bill, Further Dutch Delays, Portuguese Police’s Hemp Horror, Italian CBD In Court, And UK Watchdog Warning

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FURTHER delays to the Dutch adult-use cannabis trial look likely after the selected growers told the Government the proposed timeline is unfeasible.

They highlight their inability to secure adequate banking facilities, their struggle with high energy and other raw material costs and problems with the track and trace system established by the government for the experiment, reports news site NRC.

The Dutch experiment is designed to regulate sales and terminate the supply of black market cannabis to its coffee shops. 

Initially scheduled for 2021 the Government delayed it to the second quarter of 2023, but the growers say it is unlikely to begin until at least the fourth quarter of 2023.

Cannabis Policy

Ten growers have been selected to legally grow cannabis for four years for coffee shops in ten Dutch municipalities: Arnhem, Almere, Breda, Groningen, Heerlen, Hellevoetsluis, Maastricht, Nijmegen, Tilburg and Zaanstad.

Their concerns came to light in letters from nine of the ten participating growers to Health Minister Ernst Kuipers and Justice and Security Minister Dilan Yesilgöz.

In a response to NRC, the two Ministries said they are in talks with the Ministry of Finance, growers and a bank about providing accounts, and will provide further details before the end of the year.

Meanwhile ministerial teams from Luxembourg met with their peers in the Netherlands to discuss the experiences of the Dutch recreational cannabis project. 

The Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Health and Minister of Justice of Luxembourg were received in The Hague by representatives of the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport and the Ministry of Justice and Security.

The purpose of the visit by the Luxembourg team was to study possible steps towards the legalization of adult cannabis use.

Czechs Aim For 2024 Legalisation

The exchanges provided the Luxembourg delegation with an overview of the current policy governing cannabis in the Netherlands, reports Cannareporter. 

Moves to establish an adult-use market in the Czech Republic are set to be launched by the end of the year.

In an interview with the ČTK news channel the national anti-drug coordinator Jindřich Vobořil says he plans to submit a draft over the coming weeks. 

This followed a meeting of drug coordinators of the 27 member states of the EU in Prague in September, which looked at ways of regulating a continental cannabis market.

“I would like the law to be in effect from January 2024 at the latest. That is one of my ambitions,” said Mr Vobořil, who has long proposed the liberalisation of the cannabis market in the Czech Republic under strict conditions.

He went on to say the regulations should cover sales, production, recommended THC levels, and the licensing of manufacturers and retailers.

Portuguese Penalties Reversed

Three Italian trade associations are taking the Government to court over its classification of hemp flowers and leaves as medicines, thereby contravening the 2020 Kanavape judgement which deems them to be non-narcotic. 

Portuguese Police have returned 40 kg of industrial hemp flowers seized from the President of Association of Industrial Hemp Merchants (ACCIP) in 2020, reports Cannareporter.

Patrick Martins, ACCIP President and owner of the Green Swallow cannabis store franchise, had been arrested on July 2, 2020 and most of his store’s products seized. 

However, following an investigation by Judge Carlos Alexandre, which cited European legislation and the 0.2% THC limit for industrial hemp, the goods have been returned to Mr Martins.

Elsewhere on the continent a Croatian hemp producer is also challenging its lawmakers over its position on the sale of hemp flowers.

Tvrtko Kračun, founder and CEO of cannabis retail chain Hemps.hr, has been raided by the police several times and fined for selling hemp flowers.

He told CannIntelligence: “In Croatia, the growing and selling of all parts of the hemp plant is legal, but there are no guidelines on how to sell the flowers and in which category this product belongs. Some shops are selling flowers as a souvenir; in our shop we sell them as potpourri, for example.”

No Health Claims, Please

In the UK Blessed CBD has been warned by the Advertising Standards Authority not to make misleading claims on the health benefits of its products.

The ASA upheld a complaint, warning the company and Consumer Logic ‘not make medicinal claims for unlicensed products’ and not to ‘imply that CBD oil supplements could prevent, treat or cure human disease’. 

A UK housebuilder has completed one of the country’s biggest sustainable residential development projects to date featuring 25 homes built from hempcrete panels.

The homes were built using Biond, a system of pre-formed panels developed by Greencore Construction, and features nine smaller houses and 16 larger ones in Southmoor, Oxfordshire.

The prices range from £550,000 to £1.3m. James Pritchett, communications manager at Greencore Construction said: “We’re incredibly proud to build what we believe are the most sustainable homes in the country,” reports HempToday.

The German hemp industry continues to expand with cultivation reaching an all-time high of 7,000 hectares (17,000 acres), this year, reports Hemp Today.

Latest figures for hemp farms show the numbers have risen to 889 – up from 869 in 2021. The 2021 figure represented an increase of 900% in seven years, as BusinessCann reported last year.

Peter
Peter
Peter McCusker is an experienced news and business editor, who believes it’s time to fully embrace the multiple, proven, medical benefits of the cannabis plant.

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