The plan also calls for the establishment of cannabis clubs for the cultivation and distribution of cannabis for a limited number of members, to be followed by a pilot program that would allow for a small number of cannabis shops in certain regions of Europe’s most populous nation.
Agriculture Minister Cem Özdemir said that EU law “sets us limits we must respect, but that I will also say we are pushing,”
The plan, which has been revised from a proposal released last year, would allow adults to possess up to 25 grams (just under one ounce) of cannabis. The plan also permits limited home cultivation, with adults permitted to grow up to three cannabis plants at home.
“The previous cannabis policy has failed,” said German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach. “Now we have to go new ways.”
Two-Step Reform Plan for Germany
Cannabis policy reform in Germany would come in two legislative steps. The first step will be a bill that allows adults to form clubs of up to 500 members for the communal cultivation of cannabis under certain restrictions. Clubs would be able to provide members with up to 50 grams of cannabis per month, limited to up to 25 grams at a time. Members younger than 21 would be permitted up to 30 grams of low-potency cannabis per month. Clubs would be required to appoint “youth protection, addiction and prevention officers” to prevent the distribution of cannabis to minors,
Members of clubs would be permitted to
Lauterbach said the second step of the revised cannabis legalization plan will be a bill to set up regional test projects to sell cannabis through “commercial supply chains” in some areas of the country. Officials said that they expect the second bill to be drafted after the summer.
“The cannabis project is taking the next step today so that cannabis use will become legal this year,” Özdemir said.
When the original broader cannabis policy reform plan was released in October, officials warned that the scope of the proposal was subject to review by the EU. The new plan revealed this week is scaled back from last year’s proposal, which was revised after talks with the European Union’s executive commission.
Lauterbach told reporters in Berlin that the response from Brussels so far “is on the one hand, something that perhaps disappointed us, but on the other hand also an opportunity — the opportunity to build the basis for a European cannabis policy with a well-conducted study.”
The plan revealed last year would have allowed adults aged 18 years old and older to possess a limited amount of cannabis, with a proposed limit of 30 grams, or just over one ounce. The proposal also allowed for limited home cultivation of cannabis, with adults permitted to grow up to three cannabis plants at their residences.
Additionally, the original plan called for cannabis to be sold to adults aged 18 and older through licensed retailers. The proposal included plans for a range of legal cannabis products to be approved, including cured flower, vapes and oral products.