Whilst a weekly shop is not normally associated with purchasing a young cannabis plant – in Switzerland things are done differently.
German retailer Aldi has stated selling baby cannabis plants for 10 Swiss Francs – around U.S. $10. High and Polite report the plant is a CBD-rich variety containing less than 1% THC and between 30 and 35 cm in height.
Higher Swiss THC Content
The Aldi plant’s THC content is higher than in most other European countries as is common in Switzerland which has been at the forefront of the European cannabis industry for over 20 years. The European Cannabis Report from Prohibition Partners reports that in the 1990’s cannabis activists discovered a loophole in Narcotics Act.
Consequently it became possible to grow and sell cannabis provided products were sold for the explicit use of ‘aromatherapy’. Swiss law does not distinguish between cannabis and hemp on the basis of THC content, and so Swiss products can legally contain up to 1% THC, compared to the 0.2% standard across the rest of the continent.
Cannabis in Switzerland is decriminalised with the country allowing for the possession of up to 10 grams, although the purchase of seeds is a criminal offence.
Medical Cannabis Shake-Up
Whilst medical cannabis has been legal since 2008, there are only a few hundred registered medical patients due to the difficulties in securing prescriptions, say Prohibition Partners.
However, moves are underway to rectify this poorly-functioning system and new rules approved last week may help widen the scope of its medical cannabis programme, reports The Local.
Following parliamentary approval it says Swiss doctors could soon be able to prescribe cannabis to help patients relieve the pain of cancer, multiple sclerosis, and other serious illnesses. Until now, only one cannabis-containing medication, a mouth spray used for multiple sclerosis patients, could be prescribed.
Patients who needed other medical cannabis drugs had to obtain special permission from the Federal Office of Public Health, it says. The Swiss medical cannabis association has spoken in favour of developments saying people who need cannabis for medical reasons had faced an ‘impossible situation for decades.
The Local reports the Swiss government saying the next step would be to determine how health insurance companies will pay for this medication.
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