Exciting developments are unfolding in Germany as the country moves towards legalising adult cannabis use, with a focus on associations or clubs.
The Minister of Health, Karl Lauterbach, recently submitted a draft law to regulate cannabis production, sale, and recreational use.
As the legalization process progresses, it’s expected that the current draft will undergo changes through further deliberations in the German Parliament (Bundestag).
While the bill hasn’t been approved yet, the proposed model emphasizes associations as the cornerstone of legalization, with various restrictions in place to ensure responsible operation.
To guarantee a safe environment, cannabis associations will be required to secure and fence their premises, including areas for storage and cultivation.
Burglar-proof doors and windows, as well as privacy screens for greenhouses, will also be mandatory. Moreover, states can establish minimum distances between clubs and facilities like schools, playgrounds, and sports centers.
Prioritizing youth health and protection, each association must develop a strategy and appoint a prevention and addiction officer. This individual will undergo regular training and skill updates. Additionally, club directors must present a certificate of good conduct.
Clubs will also have to follow residue limits for plant protection products or fertilizers, maintain records of seeds’ origin, plant cultivation, and cannabis dispensation to members.
Transparency is key, with associations required to report their annual cannabis quantities, THC and CBD levels, sales, and current stock to authorities. Members will have a monthly limit of 50 grams, distributed in neutral packaging to discourage youth consumption. Leaflets containing essential product details will be obligatory.
The bill also outlines public consumption restrictions, including limitations around nurseries, schools, playgrounds, and sports facilities.
To protect minors, the draft law prohibits those under 18 from entering cannabis clubs and limits members aged 18 to 21 to purchasing cannabis with a maximum THC content of 10% and a monthly limit of 30 grams.
How the 10% limit will be policed is unclear.
Youth assistance secretariats may mandate participation in early intervention programs for offenses involving minors.
With a member limit of 500, the draft law allows for possession of up to 25 grams of cannabis and cultivation of three plants for personal use. Though free sale in dedicated stores won’t be permitted initially, there’s speculation about future pilot projects in select municipalities through separate legislation.